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organisms, whether a plant, animal , microorganism, is unique. Different places or different parts of the world like hills, forests, land or sea side the type of flora and fauna observed is unique. This shows that is a great Biodiversity among the plant, animals, organisms,etc. Diversity in place, structure, color etc.


of Biodiversity is a global concern today and been looked upon as one of the most pressing crises. Biologically rich and unique habitat are being degraded , fragmented and destroyed due to increase in population, over consumption of resources and effect of pollution.

has been defined as variability among living organisms from all sources interalia, terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and ecological complexes of which they are part.


there is a variation of genes within the same species (single population) and also among geographically separated population it is called genetic variation
in external or internal factors is responsible for genetic variations are about 10,000,000,000 different genes




number of species of plants and animals that are present in a region constitutes its species diversity. 13.92 million species on earth


is the most basic way to keep an account of biodiversity


is described for a specific geographical region or country or state or a district.

includes landscapes like forests, grasslands, deserts, mountains, etc. as well as aquatic ecosystems like rivers, lakes and seas. Also there are man-modified areas such as farmlands or grazing pastures.



Bio geographic Zones:

1. Trans Himalayan region of Ladakh 2. Himalayan ranges and valleys of Kashmir, HP, Uttrakhand, Assam and other NE states 3. Terai-lowland where the Himalayan rivers flow into the plains 4. The Gangetic and Brahmaputra plains 5. The Thar desert of Rajasthan

6. Semi-arid grassland of Deccan, including Gujarat, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. 7. The NE states 8. The Western Ghats in Maharashtra, Karnataka and Kerala 9. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands 10. The long western and eastern coast belt with sandy beaches, forests and mangroves.


species in this system has its own role and own importance. Biological diversity plays an important role in biospheres health, stability and functioning properly. Biodiversity concerns to all human beings and most directly related to everyday life of the people, as it provides them with food, fodder, medicines, housing material etc.

1. a)

Direct use value Consumptive value


Food value: Human consumes a number of wild and semi wild species of plants as food. Wheat, rice and corn are three major carbohydrates crops, yield nearly 2/3 of the food sustaining world population. Many species marine algae and mushrooms also form the source of food. Livestock contribute greatly to feeding humans.

ii) Medicinal Value: Quinine from bark of Cinchona tree is used to cure malaria, Penicillin from Penicillium is used as an antibiotic, Bee venom from Bee is used for Arthritis pain, etc. Many pharmaceutical industries largely depend on various plant species furnishing natural products input.

iii) Fuel value: communities near forest obtain firewood for subsistence and income generation. Use of firewood finds a significant role in cottage industries for brick, pottery and bangle firing etc. iv)Other Goods Value: Many other articles of consumptive include fodder for livestock, variety of natural fibers, thatching material, ornamental plants etc.

b) Productive Value

Timber Value : wood harvested from wild species is the commonest commodity used and traded worldwide. Several wild plants especially in tropics, produce timber as a source of income generation. Many industries such as pulp and paper industry, saw milling, plywood and charcoal production , transmission, construction poles etc.

ii) Fishery Value: Fish and other fishery products, harvested mainly from wild sources, constitute another class of commodity of great economic importance in global trade.
iii) Other Productive use value: 1. A few nitrogen fixing water weeds, such as Azolla, are being used as biofertilizers. 2. Productive value incorporates trading of genes for scientist to introduce desirable traits in crops. 3. Silk from silkworm, wool from sheep, ivory etc are traded.

2. Indirect value a) Ecosystem service value: This refers to service provided by ecosystem such as prevention of soil erosion, climate regulation, cycling of nutrients, maintenance of gaseous components, prevention from floods, gene flow, fixation of nitrogen and much more. b) Social , cultural and religious value: Plants like Neem,Tulsi,Pipal etc all are considered sacred and worshipped. The social life, customs, songs etc of tribal people are linked to forest and wildlife.

3. Aesthetic Value

b) c)


The aesthetic value is closely attached with the natural environment and the source of inspiration for adoption as mans habitat. The diverse fauna with innumerous species of animals brings the earth to life. Biodiversity has also a great value in ecotourism, bird watching, wildlife viewing, gardening etc. People spend a lot of money and time to view the aesthetic beauty of nature.

4.Ethical value
a) b) c)


This says Live and Let Live. If humans consider that species have right to exist , they must protect biodiversity. We may or may not use any species, but we should know how directly or indirectly these species are useful to us. The man holds a great responsibility towards preserving and conserving species.

5. Option Value
a) b) c)

The anticipated future uses and values of unknown species are not known. This concept is very core to biodiversity as it links variation with values. it might happen that some day we explore some potential cure for diseases like Cancer, AIDS existing somewhere in deep forest or marine ecosystem.


is the greatest threat to the world According to IUCN in 2000, 89% of birds,83% of mammals and 91% of plants are affected by loss or degradation of habitat Causes are natural disasters and human intervention with natural resources Agricultural practices is the main cause 120 of 620 primates will be extinct Animals requiring larger areas for survival will be extinct e.g. Tigers, mountain gorillas, pandas, Lions, owls.


human activities like harvesting, mining, industrialization, fishing, development of infrastructure is resulting in deforestation and clearance of grasslands, resulting in extinction of species. Various ecosystems like forest, grasslands, wetlands. Estuarine etc are facing a variety of species loss. Fresh water flora and fauna are affected by pollution.


continues habitat are divided into small and scattered patches, like forest patch surrounded by croplands, plantations, urban areas etc. Due to this population of species gets separated in isolated groups which face environmental stress and get extinct. Like bears and large cats require large area to survive get badly threaten as they have to breed only in interiors of forest. Also large animals like elephants require large areas for movement.

Pollution in various forms is responsible for global climatic changes and for extinction of the species. The excessive use of pesticides in field is causing washouts and get mixed with adjoining water bodies affecting aquatic flora and fauna. These wastes are very toxic e.g. DDT which affects all types of birds (peacocks, hawks, kites, etc.) These changes affect food chain. Coral reef along coastal areas are being threatened by industrial pollution.


of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, suspended matter are all having negative effect on plants and animals. Also acid rains, global warming, ozone layer depletion is harming species. Noise pollution causes wildlife to change their habitat. Also massive use of synthetic compounds, release of radiations, etc also change the quality of habitat.


activities may cause spread of various. Extent of the diseases may further increase when animals are kept in zoos, santuries, reserves or even at a place where there is vast population over large area. Extinction due to diseases is more common in animals then in plants.


rare and endangered wild species are threaten by genetic assimilation as they crossbreed with closely related species that are more numerous and quit vigorous. Certain plants and introduced in new habitat by human may genetically overwhelm local populations.


of worlds terrestrial habitat may face extinction due to global warming

to global environmental changes and leads to extinction of many species which fail to adapt and acclimatize to the changing environmental changes



two or more species are inter-dependent or a particular species has strong links with another, the Domino Effect takes place causing extinction of the weaker species This is the cause of extinction of almost 50% species on islands all over the world since 1600 A.D.