In 2002 world leaders met in Johannesburg for the World Summit for Sustainable Development. One of the targets agreed at that meeting was to 'achieve, by 2010, a significant reduction of the current rate of biodiversity loss at the global, regional and national level, as a contribution to poverty alleviation and to the benefit of all life on earth'.
Whilst there have been positive results in some places, worldwide, biodiversity loss is estimated to be 1000 times the natural rate, because of human activities and is being accelerated by climate change.
(l'Anax empereur) eating a Flesh Fly (Sarcophagidae),
featured here in the blog previously.
So what is biodiversity? It's been a buzz word for a few years now. Unlike many buzz words, biodiversity is what you think it is ie. it's the number and variety of organisms within a given area, which could be your backyard, or the whole world. It is accepted that high biodiversity is a good thing. The higher the biodiversity, the more stable and sustainable the environment is.
female Spotted Cranefly Nephrotoma quadrifaria
victim, featured here on the blog previously.
The International Year of Biodiversity website can be found here, and the British Natural History Museum site for IYB here. The NHM site gives a lot of information on the sorts of activities individuals can undertake to support biodiversity.
(le Staphylin odorant) with a Ground Beetle
(Carabidae) victim, probably Pterostichus sp, featured
on one of our most popular blog posts here previously.
The Natural History Museum in London is running a Species of the Day page on their website for the year. A week ago, we were thrilled to receive an email from Beulah Garner, Zoology Advisor at the museum, asking if she could use one of our photos. Species of the Day today is Ocypus olens / Devils Coach Horse / le Staphylin odorant. Beulah wanted an action shot, and said our photo was perfect. She even suggested a name for the victim. Do take a look at the Species of the Day page, as there is already a fascinating collection of flora and fauna on show.
Sphinx du liseron, featured here on the blog previously.
Le Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle in Paris is running a series of lectures throughout the year - Comment va la biodiversité en France en 2010.