Slides in this set
What is biodiversity?
Biodiversity is a measure of how varied an ecosystem is. It can be measured in terms
of genes, species or habitats.
Genetic diversity is a measure of how many variations there are in the genetic
code between individuals of a particular species, or between different species.
Species diversity is a measure of how many different species are present in
an area, and how many individuals of these species there are.
Habitat diversity is a measure of how many different habitats are present in an
What is a species?
Species diversity is most commonly used as a measure of the biodiversity of a particular
area. But what is a species?
A group of organisms that:
Different species can sometimes interbreed to produce hybrid offspring. The parent
organisms are still considered separate species because their offspring are infertile.
An example is the liger the
infertile offspring of a male
lion and a female tiger.
Another example is the zonkey the infertile offspring of a male zebra and a female
What is a habitat?
Species diversity can be strongly affected by changes in species' habitat.
At the simplest level, a habitat is
the area in which a species lives.
However, it is better to describe
the habitat of a population of
A better explanation of a habitat is the range of physical, biological and environmental
factors within which a species can survive.…read more
Habitats and communities
The habitats of different populations often overlap, so any one habitat usually
contains several species.
A community is all the populations of all the species within a particular habitat.…read more