Genetic diversity: related to biodiversity
What is - definition
Genetic diversity is the degree of gene variety within a single species (animal or plant). It corresponds to the total number of genetic characteristics in the genetic composition of species or subspecies.
Remember that genetic diversity is not the same as genetic variability. The latter refers to genetic variability within the same genetic heritage, but there is variation in the genetic characteristics of the species.
Genetic diversity is one of the main aspects of our planet's biodiversity, such as populations and ecosystems.
Main characteristics and importance of genetic diversity:
- Genetic diversity and biodiversity are interdependent.
- Genetic diversity within a species is of fundamental importance and necessary to maintain species diversity in nature.
- Genetic diversity is critical for populations of living organisms to adapt to the environment. The greater the genetic diversity, the better able the species is to resist environmental changes.
- Genetic diversity is generated mainly by: natural selection, phenomena of genetic recombination and genetic mutations.
- Man, through his action of degradation of nature, is one of the main responsible for the decrease of the genetic diversity of several species. Many have already been extinguished while others are in the process of extinction. Deforestation, river and soil pollution and predatory hunting are the main human actions that are negatively affecting the genetic diversity of plant and animal species in various parts of the world.