It is important to protect our planet Earth. Aside from protection, flora and fauna conservation (biodiversity) is equally important for the future of our planet. Everyone in the biodiversity depends on various ecosystems that get disturbed when one or more elements keep getting extinct. Population and pollution beyond limits are the main cause of this extinction. In this article, we will explain why it is necessary to conserve flora and fauna or biodiversity as a whole.
What Is Flora? What Is Fauna?
Flora is defined as the collective name for plant life that ever grew in a specific region or location at a specific time. Typically, it refers to the existing native plants. However, it may also apply to the newly imported species.
On the contrary, fauna simply refers to all the living beings of a specific area. Thus, all the species of a specific location are interconnected.
The flora and fauna of India are quite diverse. The country possesses a wide range of plant and animal species. The Indian fauna consists of 500 distinct animal species, 2000 birds, and 30000 insect species. It also contains a variety of fishes, reptiles, and amphibians. The Indian flora comprises temperate woods, alpines, evergreen forests, deciduous forests, bamboo, laurels, rhododendrons, spruce, pine, maple, and tall grasses.
What Are The Consequences Of Loss Of Flora And Fauna?
The loss of the animal and plant species can cause several problems. These problems are not only restricted to human beings but the mother Earth in general on many different levels. The fact remains that lost species will hamper the tropic chain and that the ecosystem will get destabilized. The populations directly related to the organism that disappeared will become unbalanced.
Take a simple instance. If the rabbit population decreases drastically, the wolf population will also decrease drastically as they will lose their main food source. They will have to find another animal species for their food. This could further cause imbalance to the adjacent habitats. Apart from this, the excess growth of the plants on which the rabbits used to feed on could create a heavy competition with the other plant species unbalancing that link in the trophic chain.
In addition to the imbalance between the plant and the animal species, the inert beings like soil, air and water quality will highly get affected. For instance, if we deforest a specific region, the soil of that region will loosen and get exposed to the elements. It will also massively suffer from the erosion and runoff problems.
Flora And Fauna Conservation: Government Initiatives
For conserving wildlife or protecting the flora and fauna, the government has taken initiative to set up biosphere reserves. Here are some of the most important initiatives from the government.
- To prevent the flora and fauna from extinction, the Government has set 18 biosphere reserves.
- In the global network of biosphere reserves, 10 out of these 18 reserves have been included. This consists of Sundarbans in West Bengal, the Gulf of Mannar in Tamil Nadu, Nanda Devi in Uttarakhand and the Nilgiris (Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu).
- Since the year 1992, the government has offered complete support by offering financial and technical assistance to various Botanical Gardens.
- The government has initiated numerous eco-development projects to address the flora and fauna conservation like Project Great Indian Bustard, Project Rhinos, Project Tiger and more.
- India implemented its Wildlife Protection Act back in 1972.
- The Government has taken initiative to protect the Natural Heritage, setting up 103 national parks, zoological gardens across the country and 535 wildlife and bird sanctuaries.
- In addition to this, we as a collective community need to understand the importance of the ecosystem for our survival. This is the only way in which destruction of the natural environment can be prevented.
How Can We Take Part In The Flora And Fauna Conservation?
Below mentioned are some of the most crucial steps we can take to conserve the flora and fauna of mother Earth.
1. Safeguarding Plant And Animal Habitats
For ages, humans have used animals and plants as resources. With valuing their resources, their habitat needs to be valued with equal importance. A couple of examples of forestlands being transformed into agricultural lands in Africa that resulted in biodiversity loss. The coastal mangroves are also displaced by agriculture all around the world. Urbanization is also eliminating the natural habitats of many species. Thus, these habitats need to be safeguarded.
2. Spending Lesser Time On Plants And Animals
As people are technologically advancing, their living conditions are improving. More people can afford eating meat and thus, there is higher demand for meat production. In this scenario, the meat industry sees a rise in the demand for natural resources. For instance, in the United States, the grains that are used to feed livestock can feed around 800 million humans. Therefore, to supply the demand for meat, humans are constantly destroying even more natural areas. If humans choose to eat less meat , it would reduce the demand on most of the resources that are needed to create it, be it food, water or space.
3. Reducing Access To Plant And Animal Resources
Rhino and Elephant ivory in Africa are prominent instances of reducing animal resources. The horns and tusks of these animals become scarce as well as valuable when they fall in the hands of the cartel shooters. The buyers hoard the ivories in the hope of having increased valuation in the future.
The plant resources are also not safe. Last year, the prices for the Asian wood goods such as rosewood increased up to 90%. Thus, to conserve these, we need to fight the market pressures like logging export restrictions and ivory bans.
Flora and fauna conservation plays an important role to protect our environment, the Earth and its ecosystems. Loss of these could lead human lives and the lives of other living beings to danger. There would be an imbalance deteriorating the quality of living. With these, the inert elements are also simultaneously pushed towards natural damage. Thus, it is important to conserve the flora and fauna of the planet and save mother Earth.