Flora is basically the plant and fauna the animal life that are present in a particular region or habitat or at a particular time. Flora and fauna forms a major part of biodiversity. In the last few decades we saw a steady increase in the extinction rate of flora and fauna. Therefore, conservation of biological biodiversity is of paramount importance to the survival of man and to preserve the continuity of food chains. Biodiversity sustains human livelihoods and life itself. Biodiversity found on the Earth today consists of many millions of distinct biological species, the products of four billion years of evaluation. Biodiversity is the variety of life on earth, it includes all organisms, species and populations, the genetic variations among these and their complex assemblages of genes, species and ecosystems and in turns, their interactions with the environment. This is life, this is Biodiversity.
Biodiversity is defined as “the variability among living organisms from all sources, including terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they a part; this includes diversity within species, between species and the ecosystems”.Conservations and sustainable use of biodiversity is fundamental to ecologically sustainable development. Biodiversity is part of our daily lives and livelihood and constitutes resources upon which families, communities, nations and future generation.
The main objectives of the Ecology and Biodiversity under Environmental Biology are presented as below:
Conservation of biological diversity leads to conservation of essentials ecological diversity and preserve the continuity of food chains
Conserving the animals and plants in their natural habitat as below:
Study of biological environment is one of the most important aspects in EIA in view of the need for conservation of environmental quality and biodiversity. Biodiversity makes up the structure of the ecosystems and habitats that support essential living resources, including wildlife, fisheries and forests. It helps to provide basic human needs such as food, shelter, and medicine. It composes ecosystems that maintain oxygen in the air, enrich the soil, purify of the water, protect against floods, storm damage and also regulate climate. Higher biodiversity ensure rich gene pool, which provides stability of different ecosystem and valuable resources to fulfil the basic requirements of human being.
Earlier conservation laws came from India in the 3rd century BC when Emperor Asoka wrote the fifth pillar edict forbidding the slaughter of certain wildlife in the forest. Around 10% of the country still has forest cover only and 4% is protected within National Parks and similar reserves. Articles 48-A of the Constitution of India, specify “The state shall endeavour to protect and improve the environment and to safeguard the forests and wildlife of the country” whereas Article 51-A (g) states that “it shall be the duty of every citizens of India, to protect and improve the natural environment Including forest, lake, river, wildlife and to have compassion for living creatures. These laws are strengthened by judicial interpretation of Article 21.
The protection of biodiversity and environment is vital for sustainable human development. Classification of Flora and Fauna has been made as per Schedule of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. Today it is a well known fact that climate change, desertification, drought and other natural calamities are induced by the destruction of natural resources.
A change in the composition of biotic communities is reflected by a change in the distribution pattern, density, diversity, frequency, dominance and abundance of natural species of flora and fauna existing in the ecosystem. These changes over a span of time can be assessed and related to the existing environmental factors. The sensitivity of animal and plant species to the changes occurring in their existing ecosystem can therefore, be used for monitoring environmental impact assessment (EIA) studies of any project. Studies on biological aspects of ecosystems are important in EIA for safety of natural flora and fauna. Information on the impact of environmental stress on the community structure serves as an inexpensive and efficient early warning system to check the damage to a particular ecosystem. The change in biotic community is studied by the pattern in the distribution, abundance and diversity. This peculiarity of plants can be utilized to assess the impacts of ensuring project on flora and fauna of the region, which are important components of biological environment. In this regard, the baseline condition of the study area needs to be studied. As the environment change, species best adapted to that environment becomes predominant. Diversity influences by the nature of the ecosystem