2 Where are we?Several mass extinctions have occurred in Earth’s historyAre we currently living during another mass extinction?
3 What is biodiversity?Biodiversity- refers to the number and variety of species on EarthKnown species= 1.7 millionEstimates = over 10 millionSpecies are considered known when they are collected and scientifically described
4 Levels of biodiversity Species diversity- # of different species in an area (also called biodiversity)Ecosystem diversity- variety of habitats and ecological processes w/in an ecosystemGenetic diversity-different genes contained w/in all members of a populationGene- piece of DNA that codes for specific trait, that could be inherited by offspring
6 Value of biodiversity Preserving ecosystem balance Keystone species- species that are critical to the functioning of an ecosystemWe depend on healthy ecosystem to ensure a healthy biosphere
7 Preserving ecosystem balance Genetic diversity within populations are critical to species survivalDiversity comes from large populationsBottleneck effect- population shrinks due to sudden event (natural disaster, human influence) leaving only a few members thus reducing genetic diversity
8 Value of biodiversity Practical uses of species Clothing Shelter Medicine¼ prescription drugs plantsAntibiotics fungiFoodMost new foods are hybrids- crops created by combining genetic information from various species
9 Value of biodiversity Aesthetic value or personal enjoyment Ethics Ecotourism- business that supports the conservation and sustainable development of ecologically unique areasEthicsBelief of some that species and ecosystems have right to exist, regardless of their value
10 Biodiversity at risk Species at risk Species w/small populations Migratory speciesThose that need large tracts of landThose exploited by humans
11 Endangered vs threatened Endangered- likely to go extinct if protective measures are not taken immediatelyThreatened- declining population and is likely to become endangered if it is not protected
12 How do humans cause extinctions? Habitat Destruction & fragmentationInvasive exotic speciesExotic species- species not native to a particular areaPoaching- illegally hunting, fishing, harvesting, or trading wildlifePollution
13 Areas of critical biodiversity Endemic species- species that are native to and found only within a limited areaTropical Rain ForestCoral Reefs & Coastal EcosystemsIslands
14 Biodiversity hotspots Most threatened areas of high species diversity on Earth
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