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BIODIVERSITY

The occurrence of different types of


genes, gene pools, species, habitats
and ecosystems in a particular place
and various parts of earth is called
biodiversity.
The term coined by WALKER .G.
ROSEN and popularized by EDWARD
WILSON

Levels of diversity

1.Genetic diversity.
2.Species diversity.
3.Ecological diversity.
1.Genetic diversity.
It is a measure of variety in genetic
information contained in the organisms.
Greater the genetic diversity , More
sustenance against environment
perturbations.
Genetically uniform population are highly

2.Species diversity.
Species diversity is the variety of species and
their relative abundance present within a
region.
There are two important measures of species
diversity.
1.Species richness. It is the number of species
per unit area.
2.Species evenness-It is the relative
abundance with which each species is
represented in an area.

The level of diversity of an ecosystem is


determined by the variety and number of
individuals.
ex. there is a greater diversity of amphibians
in Western Ghats than Eastern Ghats

Ecological diversity. It is the diversity at


community and ecosystem level.
There is a greater ecosystem diversity in India
ex .Biomes like Alpine Meadows, Rain forests,
Deserts, Wetlands. Mangrove forests, Coral
reefs.

GLOBAL DIVERSITY
The total number of plants and animals
described is about 1.5 million according to
IUCN.2004
Robert May has made more conservative
scientifically sound estimate, which puts the
global species diversity at about 7 million.
Animals more than 70 % .

The estimate do not give any


figure for prokaryotes because.
1.The conventional taxonomic methods are
not sufficient for identification of microbes
2. Under laboratory conditions , many of the
species cannot be cultured.
Their diversity would be put into millions by
biochemical and molecular biology
techniques.

INDIAN BIODIVERSITY.
India is among the 12 mega diversity countries
of the world.
India has 8.1 % of Global species DIVERSITY
though it has only 2.4% of the worlds land
area.
There are 90,000-1,00000 species of animals
and about 45,000 species of plants, only 22%
of the total species have been recorded.
More than 1,00000 species of plants and more
than 3,00000 species of animals to be

BIODIVERSITY PATTERNS
Biodiversity varies with change in latitude
and altitude
Speciation is favoured by favourable
environmental conditions.
1.Latitudinal and Altitudinal Gradients.
There is a decrease in species diversity from
equator towards poles.
The greatest biodiversity on earth is the
Amazonian rain forest in South America.

There are three hypothesis tom explain the


differences in biodiversity between tropical
and temperate regions
1.In general, speciation is a function of time,
as the temperate regions were subjected to
frequent glaciations in the past, the tropics
have remained undisturbed and thus more
species diversity.
2.Tropical environment are less seasonal,so
relatively more constant and predictable than
temperate regions. such constant
environments have promoted niche
specialization and greater species diversity.

3.The availability of solar radiation,is more in


tropical region which contribute directly to
more productivity and indirectly to greater
species diversity.
2. Species Area relationship.
It was observed by Alexander Van Humboldt
that within a region species richness increases
with increased explored area but only up to a
limit.
For a number of taxa like angiosperms, fresh
water fishes and birds the relatioship between
species richness and area is found to be a

Alexander Van Humboldt

The relationship becomes linear(straight line )


on a log scale and is described by the
equation.
logS=logC+Z log A.
Where S= Species Richness.
Z= Slope of line ( regression coefficient)
A=Area and C=Y-intercept.
Ecologists have found that irrespective of the
taxonomic group or region, the value o if Z
Line ranges between 0.1 and 0.2.
But the z-value ranges between 0.6 and 1.2 in
very large area, like a continent.

Importance of biodiversity to
ecosystem
A stable community has the following
attributes.
1.There should not be much variations in the
year to year productivity.
2.It should be either resistant or resilient to
seasonal disturbance.
3. It should be also resistant to invasion by
alien species.

The following features are shown by David


Tilman.
1. Less year to year variation in the total
biomass was shown in the plots with more
species.
2.Higher productivity was shown by plots
with increased diversity, thus species richness
and diversity are essential to ecosystem
health and survival of human race on the
Earth.

BIODIVERSITY LOSS
More than 2000 species of native birds have
faced extinction due to the colonisation of
tropical pacific islands by human being.
There is an extinction of 784 species in the
last 500 years according to the IUCN Red list2004( 359-invertebrates, 338 vertebrates,87
plants.)
Recently extinct animals 1. Stellers sea cow (Russia).
2.Dodo bird (Mauritius).

Quagga (Affrica)

3.Thylacine(Australia).

. Stellers sea cow (Russia

2.Dodo bird (Mauritius)

Tiger(Bali,Javan,Caspian)

In the last 20 years ,27 species have become


extinct.
Amphibians are more vulnerable to extinction,
more than s15,500 species are facing
extinction, presently the following face the
threat of extinction.
1.31 % of gymnosperms.
2.32 % of amphibians.
3.12 % bird species.
4.23 % of mammals.

There have been five episodes of mass


extinction since the origin of life on earth and
evolution, but due to human activities the
current rate of extinction is 100-1000 times
faster than them.

Lose of diversity causes


1. Decrease in plant production
2. Lowered resistance to environmental
perturbation.
3.Increased variability in ecosystem processes
like water cycle, pest. plant productivity.

CAUSES OF BIODIVERSITY LOSSES.


The EVIL QUARTET which describe the four
major causes
1.HABITAT LOSS AND FRAGMENTATION
2.OVER EXPLOITATION.
3.INVASION OF ALIEN SPECIES.
4.CO-EXTINCTION.

Habitat loss and Fragmentation


It is the primary cause for extinction.
Initially,14% of the land surface area were
covered by tropical rain forest but now only
6% of the land area is covered by them.
The Amazonian forest called as the lungs of
the planet are cleared for the cultivation of
soyabean/converted into grassland for raising
cattle.
Many animals and plants are deprived from
their home and face extinction due to total
loss of habitat.

OVER EXPLOITATION
Many species become extinct when nature is
over exploited by man for natural resources.
ex Stellars sea cow , passenger pigeon etc.

INVASION BY ALIEN SPECIES.


Extinction of the indigenous species is caused
when the alien species becomes invasive and
compete with the native species.
ex.The endemic species of Cichlid fish faced
extinction on the introduction of Nile perch
into Lake Victoria.(East Africa).
Invasion of exotic species of plants like
Parthenium,Lantana and Eicchornia pose
threat to the survival of many native species.
Introduction of African Catfish(Clarias

Cichlid fish

Eicchornia

African Catfish(Clarias gariepinus)

African Catfish(Clarias
gariepinus)
.

Native cat fish


(Indian)C.bacterachus

Native cat fish


(Indian)C.bacterachus.

Parthenium

Lantana

Passenger Pigeon or Wild Pigeon


(Ectopistes migratorius)

co-extinction
It is a phenomenon by which when a species
become extinct, the plant and animal species
association with it in an obligatory manner
also become extinct.
ex.On the extinction of fish, all those
parasites which are specific to that fish also
face extinction.
co-evolved plant pollinator.

BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION

REASONS FOR BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION.


1.Narrowly Utilitarian .
2.Broadly Utilitarian.
3. Ethical.

1.Narrowly Utilitarian Reasons.


These are obvious reasons .
Human beings derive a number of economic
benefits like food , fibre ,fire
wood,resins,dyes, tannins, gums.
Native people use about 2500 species of
plants for traditional drugs/medicines.

2.Broadly Utilitarian Reasons.


It includes ecosystem services which cannot
be given a price tag. They are
1.Oxygen production.
2.Pollination of flowers.
3.Aesthetic pleasures like bird watching,
gardening. etc.

3. Ethical Reasons.
It is an intrinsic value of each species.
It is our moral duty to care for their well being.

APPROACHES FOR
CONSERVATION OF BIODIVERSITY.
THERE ARE TWO MAJOR APPROACHES .
1.INSITU CONSERVATION (on-site
conservation)
2. EX-SITU CONSERVATION( off site
conservation)

IN SITU CONSERVATION

EX-SITU CONSERVATION

1.It is the process of protecting


the endangered species of
plant or animals in the natural
habitat.

It is the process of protecting


the endangered species of
plant or animals by removing it
from the unsafe or threatened
habitat and placing them
under care of humans

2.It helps in recovering


populations in the
surroundings where they have
developed their distinctive
features

It helps in recovering
populations or preventing their
extinction under simulated
conditions that closely
resemble their natural habitats.

Ex. Biosphere, National parks,


Wild life Santuaries, Sacred
forest/lakes

Ex.Botanical
gardens,zoos,seed/pollen
banks,Gene banks,Tissue
culture.

IN SITU STRATEGIES
There are 425 biosphere reserves in the world,
of which 14 are in India.
1.Nilgri,
2.Nanda Devi.
3.Nokrek.
4.Manas.
5.Sunderbans.
6.Gulf of Mannar
7.Great Nicobar.

Hot spots have been identified for maximum


protection to the endemic and endangered
species.
There are 34 hotspots on the global basis,of
which three are India ,THEY are
1.Western Ghats and SriLanka.
2.Indo-Burma
3.Himalaya.

NATIONAL PARKS AND WILD LIFE


SANCTUARIES.

According to September 2002 list. India has


90 National parks.
448 Wild Life Sanctuaries.
Jim Corbett National Park is the first
established in India.

SACRED FORESTS.
These are undisturbed forest without any
human intervention and they are surrounded
by highly degraded landscapes.
Such forests include a number of rare
.endangered and endemic species.
Ex.
1.Khasi and Jaintia Hills of Meghalaya.
2.Western Ghat regions of Karnataka and
Maharasthra

EX SITU CONSERVATION

INDIA has
27 5zoological parks.
35 Botanical gardens.
CRYOPRESERVATION is the method of
preservation by storage of materials at ultra
low temperature for very long period.ex
gametes of threatened species can be
preserved.

CONVENTIONS OF BIODIVERSITY
1. THE EARTH SUMMIT.
This is the historic convention on Biological
diversity held in Rio De Janerio in 1992.
It is called upon all the nations to take
appropriate measures for
1. conservation of biodiversity.
2. Sustainable utilization of the benefits from
biodiversity.

The World Summit on Sustainable


Development
This was held in 2002,in Johanesburg ,South
Africa.
190 countries signed commitment to achieve
a significant reduction in the current rate of
biodiversity loss at global level and local levels
by 2010.

BIODIVERSITY :- It is the term used to


describe the combine diversity at all the
levels of biological organization.
ECOLOGICAL DIVERSITY :- The diversity at the
ecosystem level .
ENDEMISM :- It is the condition when species
confined to that region and not found
anywhere else.
GENETIC DIVERSITY :- The High diversity

DIFFERENCES
Alpha Diversity
1. It refers to the diversity of the organism
sharing the same habitat or community.
2. It is within community diversity.
Beta Diversity
1. It refers to the diversity of the organism in
different communities in a habitat.
2. It is between community diversity

Ex-situ Conservation
1.It is called off-site conservation.
2.Includes botanical garden, zoos, gene bank,
seedlings etc.
In-situ conservation
1.It is called on-site conservation.
2.It includes wildlife sanctuaries, national
parks, as well as protected areas to protect

ASSIGNMENTS
LEVEL1
1. What is the approximate no of plant and
animal species described so far by IUCN
(2004) report?
2. Which type of graph curve is obtained when
species richness is plotted against area?
3. Name a few weeds that have invaded our
crop fields as alien species. Why these have
become uncontrollable
4. Categorize the following into in-situ and ex-

LEVEL2
1. Reserpine is obtained from a plant found in
Himalayan ranges. Name the plant.
2. Western Ghats have greater amphibian
species diversity than Eastern Ghats. Why?
3. Who proposed rivet popper hypothesis?
Describe this hypothesis briefly.
4. Which type of organism are prone to co
extinction and why ?

1.The invasion of alien species is responsible


for extinction of the indigenous species. Give
2 examples to support this statement.
2.. If a speices of fish becomes extinct, all
those parasites, specific to that fish also face
extinction. Which of the major cause describe
as the evil Quartets is being accounted

3. Categorize the followings statement into


narrowly utilitarian, broadly utilitarian and
ethical reason: i) Every species in biodiversity has an intrinsic
value even if it not of value to us. ii) Human
beings device a number of economic benefits
like food, fiber etc from biodiversity. iii)
Biodiversity provides ecosystem services
which can not be given price tag. Justify your
categorization also.
4. Since the origin of life on earth and

QUESTIONS FOR SELF EVALUATION


1 What is IUCN Red list ? Give any two uses
of this list .
2Name any 2 threatened animal species of
India . 3Which are the biodiversity HOT
Spots in India ?
4Name two alien species introduced in
India .
5What is the importance of sacred forests