The Web of Life Sabino Canyon  
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What about animals that are both predator and prey?

Animals that are both predator and prey are part of what makes the Web of Life more complicated than a simple food chain. Imagine this event.

You are walking along a trail in lower Sabino Canyon and you see a roadrunner eating a lizard. Which one is predator and which one is prey? Right! The roadrunner is the predator (diner) and the lizard is the prey (dinner). You look into the shade under a bush and see a rattlesnake swallowing a pocket mouse. In this food chain, the rattlesnake is the what? Right! It is the predator.

But the roadrunner is still hungry. It sees the rattlesnake resting in the shade. It knows that the rattlesnake is slower when it's digesting its food. The roadrunner strikes and catches the rattlesnake off-guard. It eats the rattler. What is the rattlesnake now? Predator or prey?

Simple Food Chains collared lizard <---- roadrunner
pocket mouse <---- black-tailed rattlesnake
A Small Part
of a Food Web
paloverde seed pods <---- insects <---- collared lizard <---- roadrunner
paloverde seed pods <---- pocket mouse <---- black-tailed rattlesnake <----> roadrunner

Key: producer prey (consumer) predator (secondary consumer) predator and prey

Using plants and animals found in Sabino Canyon, sketch a simple food chain. Use arrows to point from the predator to the prey. Now sketch a food web. Some arrows may point both ways.


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