|Photo Credit: MarineBio|
What is biodiversity?
Biodiversity refers to the components of the earth’s biosphere. Bio means ‘life’, and diversity means variation. Therefore, the variation in the type and nature of living organisms in any specific area can be termed as biodiversity of that area. According to Wikipedia, biodiversity is the degree of variation of life. This can refer to genetic variation, species variation, or ecosystem variation within an area, biome, or planet.
Why is biodiversity important?
Everything that lives in an ecosystem is part of the web of life, including humans. Each species of vegetation and each creature has a place on the earth and plays a vital role in the circle of life. Plant, animal, and insect species interact and depend upon one another for what each offers, such as food, shelter, oxygen, and soil enrichment.
Maintaining a wide diversity of species in each ecosystem is necessary to preserve the web of life that sustains all living things. In his 1992 best-seller, "The Diversity of Life," famed Harvard University biologist Edward O. Wilson -- known as the "father of biodiversity," -- said, "It is reckless to suppose that biodiversity can be diminished indefinitely without threatening humanity itself."
- California Biodiversity Council
Therefore, we should preserve our biodiversity for maintaining balance in nature, to not disturb the food chain, keep the life cycles, water cycles, and cycles of seasons in balanced state, etc. Similarly, we should preserve them so that our future generations can also get an opportunity to see/watch the different species of flora and fauna.
These points are explained below briefly:
Smooth running of Natural cycles and phenomenaPreserving biodiversity is vital to preserve the recycling power of nature. Nature recycles matters of earth; for instance, the composition of air. Oxygen breathed in by animals is replenished by the plants during photosynthesis. Similarly, the dead plants and animals are decomposed and become nutrients for newer plants; that is the death gives birth to newer lives. In the same fashion, the water is recycled by aquatic plants and animals as well as the phenomena like water cycles. If we don't take care of our biodiversity, these phenomena and cycles will be completely disturbed.
Saving flora and fauna for future generationsWe need to save flora and fauna for our newer generations so that they will also be able to see them. Biodiversity constitutes of many explored and unexplored living organisms (both plants and animals). Conserving biodiversity will protect them so that their use and importance can be researched and used to for human causes. With the types of diseases and their occurrence increasing, the need for medicines is increasing too. By protecting the bio-diversity we can preserve the sources of many different medicines (herbs, animals, and minerals saved in the forest areas) which might be useful in future.
How can we conserve biodiversity?
Although the perspective on why conservation is necessary and other things differ vastly, the way to
conserve biodiversity are plainly straightforward. Afforestation, ban on poaching, creating safer environment for animals and so on are the sustainable ways to conserve biodiversity.