What is Biodiversity?
Biodiversity is a contraction of biological diversity. It is simply the variety and variability of all organisms. It is a broad term that encompasses:
- The diversity between ecosystems
- The diversity between species
- The diversty within species (Genetic diversity)
Why is Biodiversity Important?
Different organisms have different roles in their ecosystems. A variety of organisms are needed to provide different ‘services’ to the ecosystem. Producers are needed to provide energy, others are needed to cycle nutrients, some are needed to aid the distribution of others, and there are many other niches we could discuss, but you get the idea. Thus, biodiversity is needed to maintain healthy ecosystems. Genetic diversity is also important as it gives species a better chance of surviving in changing conditions, as well as diluting percentages of that species that may have alleles with negative effects (I will talk more about genetics and evolution in future posts).