According to Oxford University Professor David Macdonald, “Without biodiversity, there is no future for humanity.” The term biodiversity was established in 1985. It comprises numerous organisms and their relative frequencies in an ecosystem showcasing the organisation of organisms at different levels.
It manages nature’s variety, the biosphere, which implies variabilities among plants, animals and microorganism species. It has ecological and economic significance and provides housing, nourishment, fuel, clothing and several other resources. It also includes monetary benefits through tourism.
Following are the three levels of biodiversity:
- Species diversity: It is used to mean the diversity of living species. There are millions of unique species living on earth. They are divided into groups based on their specificities (animals, insects, plants, fungi). Species diversity has two categories, namely Intraspecies Diversity and Interspecies Diversity. Intraspecific diversity means the genetic variation of individuals and populations of the same species. Example: Humans with white or black skin, blue or green eyes, blond or brown hair. Interspecies diversity refers to the variety of living species among themselves, such as their number, nature, and relative importance. Example: Humans (or sapiens), a species with currently 7.7 billion organisms, have a more diversity rate than the low number of African elephants that are confronting the issue of extinction.
- Genetic Diversity: It is about the diversity of genes prevailing in the current scenario. There are different genes and different ways of genes between and within different species. The genetic variability contributes to the numerous life forms such as physical and biological characteristics, also based on the interaction with the environment, phenotypes. They are the bits of biochemical information that somewhat assess how an organism looks, behaves and lives at a particular place for a specific period—for example, Western and Eastern grey squirrels.
- Ecosystem Biodiversity: It means the variety of ecosystems with their nature and figure, where living species communicate with their environment and with each other. An ecosystem comprises organisms from different species living together in an environment and their links through different flows of energy, nutrients and matter. For instance, there are diverse ecosystems on earth, each having its specificities, namely oceans, deserts, lakes, plains or forests. Additionally, there are certain details such as cold or hot deserts, boreal or tropical forests, warm or cold water coastal regions. Each ecosystem has its odd features, species and approaches to function. Interaction is a primordial idea that focuses on a constantly evolving reality at each level and between them. Biodiversity isn’t restricted to the static inventory of living species at a particular point in time. The evaluation of biodiversity and its interactions focuses on all kinds of organisms, namely plants, animals, bacteria and others, and to the ecosystems of which they’re part, including the form of interaction.