If plants and animals took minerals from the earth and then didn't return any of it, then we would have run out a long time ago.
Whenever a plant or animal dies it is returned to the environment by a group of organisms called decomposers.
Decomposers are groups of microorganisms which include bacteria and fungi.
DETRITUS FEEDERS such as maggots and some types of worm start the process, they eat the dead animals and produce waste material.
The bacteria and fungi then digest everything - dead animals, plants and detritus feeders plus their waste. They use some of the nutrients to grow and reproduce. They also release waste products.
Their waste products are carbon dioxide, water and minerals which plants can use.
the process of materials breaking down by decay makes sure that the soil remains fertile and plants can grow. It is also…