LOSS OF BIODIVERSITY
Biological wealth of our planet is declining rapidly. This is due to human activities as they derive benefits from the living world either directly or indirectly. This is due to the diversity of organisms. E.g., Colonisation of Tropical Pacific Island by humans led to the extinction of more than 2000 species of native birds.
IUCN Red List (2004): Extinction of 784 species i.e., 338 vertebrates, 359 Invertebrates, 87 Plants, have occurred in the last 500 years.
Recent extinctions are:
- Dodo in Mauritius.
- Quagga in Africa.
- Thylacine in Australia.
- Steller sea cow in Russia.
- 3 species of Tiger: Bali, Java & Caspian.
In the last 20 years, 27 species have disappeared. Extinction across taxa is not random, some groups like Amphibians are more vulnerable. More than 15,500 species worldwide are facing the threat of extinction.