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Characteristics and risk factors of biodiversity in Mexico

Mexico is a megadiverse country due to the great biodiversity present within its borders, with more than 200,000 different species, which represents approximately 10% of the world’s total of existing species. Therefore, it is convenient to know more about the great variety of living beings that inhabit this country, their characteristics and the factors that put them at risk, as well as the actions for their conservation.

This AgroCorrn article deals with the characteristics and risk factors of biodiversity in Mexico and other related aspects.

  1. Biodiversity in Mexico: characteristics, flora and fauna
  2. Biodiversity risk factors in Mexico
  3. Actions to conserve biodiversity in Mexico – how to take care of it

Biodiversity in Mexico: characteristics, flora and fauna

Mexico contains a large number of ecosystems and forms of life, both fauna and flora. Due to its high biodiversity index, the United Nations Environment Program has determined that Mexico is a megadiverse country . Due to its geographical, climatic and topographic characteristics, Mexico has a great diversity of different ecosystems, such as jungles (dry and humid), temperate and cloudy forests, grasslands and scrublands, deserts, lakes, volcanoes, as well as mangroves and marine areas. In this other article we talk about the main ecosystems of Mexico and their characteristics .

Factors such as the existence of mountain systems such as the Eastern and Western Sierras Madre, the diversity of climates (both tropical, alpine and extremely arid) and the possession of two biogeographic zones (Nearctic and Neotropical) explain the existence of this great biodiversity.

Within the Mexican biodiversity, there is a large number of endemic species (exclusive to this geographical area), both fauna and flora. Some examples are the Mexican axolotl ( Ambystoma mexicanum ), the vaquita marina ( Phocoena sinus ), the Jalisco pine ( Pinus jaliscana ) or the perennial corn ( Zea diploperennis ).

The importance of biodiversity in Mexico (and in the world in general) lies in the services it offers in the form of extractable resources, protection against adverse weather conditions, the sustenance of life, leisure and recreational activities, and so on.

Biodiversity risk factors in Mexico

There are several factors that put Mexican biodiversity at risk , such as:

Loss and degradation of habitats

Anthropic activity endangers existing habitats with actions such as the construction of infrastructures to the detriment of natural spaces, changes in land use, the expansion of agricultural activities for the exploitation of natural resources or the growth of human settlements. . All this leads to a degradation and loss of habitats and leads to a decrease in biodiversity. There are also actions that destabilize ecosystems, such as the introduction of invasive alien species, which, being in an environment suitable for their development and without natural predators, expand rapidly and change the conditions of the environment and the balance of the biome.

To expand this information, you may be interested in this other article on Destruction of the environment and habitat: causes and consequences .

Overexploitation of natural resources

Deforestation causes desertification of habitats and loss of biodiversity, while activities such as overfishing reduce the natural populations of the species in an ecosystem, since the rate of extraction of resources is higher than the rate of restoration of the same.

Here we talk more about the Overexploitation of natural resources: causes and consequences .


Human beings produce a large amount of waste that, if not properly disposed and managed, ends up in the environment, contaminating it and destroying its original characteristics. Actions such as the excessive use of chemical substances such as insecticides and fertilizers, the generation and enormous use of single-use plastics, industrial production associated with the emission of greenhouse gases and intensive agricultural practices that contaminate soils and aquifers cause an impact. negative on ecosystems and lead to the loss of biodiversity in Mexico.

Climate change

Global warming as a consequence of anthropic activity leads to climate change that affects all existing species, as it changes the environmental conditions to which they are adapted. This can lead to a loss of adaptability and, therefore, a decrease in the survival capacity of certain organisms, since the development of evolutionary adaptations to new conditions cannot cope with the rapidity with which the climate is changing.

Unsustainable tourism

The uncontrolled influx of people into ecosystems can cause their imbalance and destruction, due to the impacts that this entails, which leads to a degradation of the system and the fauna and flora associated with it. This can be clearly seen in habitats such as coral reefs, which are attacked by the enormous tourist intensity they endure, with the consequent destruction of corals, which take long periods of time to recover from the damage suffered.

Actions to conserve biodiversity in Mexico – how to take care of it

Among the existing actions to conserve biodiversity in Mexico are:

  • Change the existing economic model , which has proven to be unsustainable over time if environmental conditions are to be kept in balance.
  • Reduction of the ecological footprint at a global level, starting from the point of substitution of non-renewable energy sources (fossil fuels such as coal, oil or gas) by renewable sources (such as wind, solar or hydraulic).
  • Policy change in the form of production , both industrial and agricultural and livestock. It is also necessary to review practices in the field of transportation and tourism. The use of public transport and electric vehicles must be promoted in order to reduce the atmospheric pollution associated with the use of conventional transport, such as cars and motorcycles that run on diesel or diesel.
  • Reduction of the exploitation of natural resources and transition to a sustainable extraction mode that allows guaranteeing their existence for the enjoyment of future generations, without exceeding the rate of restoration of resources in ecosystems. Here you can learn about the Exploitation of natural resources: definition, types and examples .
  • Efficient management of waste and residues , based on the rule of the three Rs: reduction, reuse and recycling. It is not sustainable to continue producing amounts of waste like the current ones. Single-use products must be replaced by reusable and durable ones that do not contribute to the generation of waste.
  • Coordination between administrations and management organizations and conservationists for the development of action plans that reduce the loss of biodiversity and work for the protection of flora and fauna species, through the standardization of common action plans. Learn more about the great problem posed by the Loss of biodiversity with this other post in which we delve into its causes and consequences.
  • Design and development of projects for the restoration and sustainable management of ecosystems and the establishment of a greater number of protected areas, both marine and terrestrial.

If you want to read more articles similar to Characteristics and risk factors of biodiversity in Mexico , we recommend that you enter our Biodiversity category .

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