From Coastal Wiki
An essential nutrient in the food supply of plants and the diets of animals. Animals obtain it in nitrogen-containing compounds, particularly amino acids. Although in the atmosphere is nearly 80% gaseous nitrogen, very few organisms have the ability to use it in this form. The higher plants normally obtain it from the soil after micro-organisms have converted the nitrogen into ammonia or nitrates, which they can then absorb..
- CoPraNet glossary