The Effects of Human Activity on Ecosystems and Biodiversity

Topics: Greenhouse gas, Methane, Carbon dioxide Pages: 5 (1957 words) Published: May 21, 2012
The effects of human activity on ecosystems and biodiversity Agricultural Practice
Biodiversity is a measure of the diversity among organisms in different ecosystems. "Diversity" in this definition includes diversity within a species and among species, and among ecosystems.’ Monoculture is when a farmer produces or grows one single crop over a wide area. The advantages to the farmer of monoculture are, “the reduced plant competition for nutrients, space and solar radiation, control of unprofitable organisms, the reduction of costs by limitation of specialized machinery required for arable operations and to maximize profit from the growing of high gross margin crops.” The effects of monoculture on biodiversity are that it will be lower as there will fewer plant and weeds due to the insects eating them and using the plant and weeds for habitat reasons. Like for example eating drinking and staying alive. The benefits of a farmer removing the hedges from his field are that the there will be more area for biodiversity to occur for example when growing plants for food, the plants need to be suitable for human to eat. So by a farmer removing hedges this will leave him with more area to grow more plants for food. The effects on wildlife and biodiversity from removing the hedges are bad as by doing this their habitats are being destroyed. Animals from the leaf all the way up to the hawk depend on the hedge and the hedge is as important to these animals as the hedge acts like a boundary as most the animals used to be used to living in woodlands but over the years have adapted to hedges. Animals like foxes and badges use hedges as ‘roadways from getting to and from other hedges as they do not like crossing open fields. Fertilizers are mixed with the soil for the crops to take in via their roots. Insecticides are used by the farmers to prevent insects eating away at the crops. Insecticides stop insects from eating the crops and by using this crops stay insect free. Fungicides are used to prevent fungi and ignore spreading to the crops as if they are not controlled they end up resulting in loss of yield and profit. Herbicides are used to prevent the growth of a desired plant for example a weed plant. The herbicides attacks plant hormones in a growing weed that may be in the farmers crop but the herbicide will only kill the weed and leave the crop unharmed. The effects of these chemicals on wildlife are that fertilizers improve plants growth so animals that live in a plant habitat or eat plants will have a positive effect as the plants will be perfect in growth and quality. Insecticides are bad for wildlife such as insects as it keeps them away from the plants. All the chemicals are bad for the wildlife as they either kill them or are not good for them as they have bad chemicals. These chemicals are on the food that they all eat so the chemicals are getting inside the animals and killing them or making them ill. This can also be classed as bioaccumulation as the plants are absorbing bad chemicals. This makes the food chain suffer as the starters of the food chain are getting infected and are also killing the other animal further along the line that are eating the other animals in the chain so the more they are infected the more animals that are killed later on in the food chain. Human Habitation

As the population grows there is an increase demand for land. This is needed for housing, schools, hospitals, supermarkets, factories, roads, airports, and so on. The knock on effect on the ecosystem and biodiversity is not difficult to imagine. There is concept called Greenbelt which is used to keep largely undeveloped areas, wild, or agricultural land near cities. In the countries that have greenbelt the development is very restricted. This helps to increase biodiversity as they are in force to control the area of land that plants and living organisms are occupying. When greenbelts place a policy on parts of land they own that land and use...
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