The dependence of excitation energy transfer kinetics on the electronic state of the acceptor (ground vs excited) has been resolved with a novel multipulse prePump-Pump-Probe spectroscopy. The primary energy transfer and annihilation dynamics in two model light-harvesting systems were explored: an artificially synthesized carotenoid-zinc-phthalocyanine dyad and a naturally occurring light-harvesting peridinin-chlorophyll protein complex from Amphidinium carterae. Both systems use carotenoid as the primary excitation energy donor with porphyrin chromophores as the acceptor molecules. The prePump-Pump-Probe transient signals were analyzed with Monte Carlo modeling to explicitly address the underlying step-by-step kinetics involved in both excitation migration and annihilation processes. Both energy transfer and annihilation dynamics were demonstrated to occur with approximately the same rate in both systems, regardless of the excitation status of the acceptor pigments. The possible reasons for these observations are discussed in the framework of the Förster energy transfer model. © 2013 American Chemical Society.