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What is biological diversity?

Intro to biodiversity
by Jennifer Dever on 3 September 2013

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Transcript of What is biological diversity?

photo credit Nasa / Goddard Space Flight Center / Reto Stöckli
What is biological diversity?
How many species are there on the planet?
Genetic Diversity
provides the raw material for selection to act upon, genetic variation within a species can allow the species to adapt to environmental change
How do species form?
Speciation: species formation
First described by Darwin & Wallace
Allopatry
Sympatry
Adaptive Radiation
Three levels of biodiversity:
Genetic diversity
Species diversity
Ecosystem diversity
the complete range of species and biological communities, as well as the genetic variation within species and all ecosystem processes
Biodiversity is:
Species Diversity
Defining species:
What constitutes a species? how are species recognized?
how do we determine what is a distinct species?
Species Definitions:
Biological Species Concept
Morphospecies Concept
Evolutionary/Phylogenetic Species Concept
Determining if a set of populations is a single species is important to conservation . It serves as the basis for protection and management!

1.7 million described so far...
total estimates range from 3 - 100 million
Evolutionary Significant Units
population or group of populations that is substantially reproductively isolated from other conspecific populations and that represents an important component of the evolutionary legacy of the species. The ESU policy defines the criteria for identifying a population as a distinct population segment (DPS), which can be listed under the ESA.
Types of ecosystems:
Terrestrial:
Forest
Desert
Grassland
Aquatic:
Freshwater
Marine
Ecosystem Diversity
fundamental units of evolution
primary targets of conservation legislation
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