Biodiversity refers to the variability among the living organisams;plants,animals and microbs from all sources including terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.Ithas been estimated that more than 50 million species of plants,animals and micro-organisams are existing in the world.* sgnificance of Biodiversity :Its significance provides a socio-economic and monetary asset to the nation.*1.Productive use:Biodiversity provides us many products ,such as fuel,timber,fish,fodder,skin,fruits,cereals and medicinal plants.In 1994-95 the income from agriculture,forestry and fisheries in India was nearly 30% or 736.88 billion rupees. *2.Consumptive use:Its related to natural products that are consumed directly.For example,a significant number of such non timber forest products as soft broom grass and cane come under this category.3.Indirect use:Maintenance of ecological balance,conservation of natural resources and prevention of siol erosion may be considered asthe example of indirect use of biodiversity.
**Types of biodiversity:1.Species diversity:It reffers to the variability among the living organisams in different ecosystem and includes variabilty within the species and variability among the species of plants,animals and micro-organisams.
2.Genetic diversity:pertains to range of diversity in plant and animal genetic resources.It includes diversity among individuals of a species as well as variability among the species.
**Biodiversity of india:
India,with a geographical area of 329 million hectare has almost all the ecological zones found in the world.By virtue of being a meeting ground for three major global biogeographic region:
(i)Indo Malayan (ii)Eurasian(iii)Afrotropical.India is one of the twelve major diversity centres in the world.
**The Major Hot Spots of India:
Hot spots:1.Karakoram and ladakh.
2.Kumaon -Garhwal Himalaya.
13.Bastar and korapur hills.
15.Tiraupati Cuddappa hills.
16.Mahabaleshwar -Khandala ranges.
18.Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
**Depletion of biodiversity:The loss of biological diversity is mainly due to habit destruction,over-exploitation resources,pollution and introduction of exotic plants and animals.Indian cheetah,the pink headed and Mountain quail have already become extinct from Indian fauna.Several species of mammals, 47 forms of birds,15 species of reptiles,3 amphibians and a large number of butterflies,moths,beetles are facing danger of extinction.Similarly over 1500 species of vascular plants are considered to be endangered.
The impact of environment pollution,particularly the thining of ozone layer,acid rain and global warming etc.are bound to affect biodiversity adverssely.
**Conservation of Biological Diversity:
*Conservation of biodiversity is of two types:
1.In-situ conservation:This conservation measures are related to the biodiversity of the ecosystems of the orogional habitats.It is the best,easiest,most advantageous and most feasible method to conserve natural biodiversity which aims at:
1.Establishing new protected areas based on utility,distinctiveness and endangerment of species.
2.Encouraging continuous and traditional agricultural practices.
3.Encouraging public participation in planning and management of protected areas.
4.Initiating regional co operation for conservation of ecosystems and species.
5.Conducting periodical reviews of protected areas and plan for assessing present and future needs.
This conservation measures are included under ex-situ or off-situ conservation.Example of ex-situ conservation are zoos,aquaria,botanical gardens,parks,genes,gametes,embryo,seeds banks,etc.
The following ex-situ steps have been suggested to restore and conserve biodiversity :
1.Collection and maintenance of microbial culture.
2.Development of database on biodiversity.
3.Encouraging the establishment of seed or gene bank of endangered species.
4.Initiating legal action against damage of biodiversity.
5.Creating an international fund for biodiversity conservation.
6.Developing long -term and short-term action plans for diversity conservation and sustainable utilization of biodiversity.