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There are geographical, political, ecological and socioeconomic factors capable of conditioning and modifying the balance of ecosystems and the anthropic pressures they support.

If you wonder what factors affect the ecosystem, acting as generators of changes in biodiversity, check out this article by Ecologist Verde on what are the factors that affect biodiversity, in which you will also be able to discover some biodiversity conservation strategies to prevent it from continuing to be lost in enormous quantities.

Overexploitation of the natural environment

The rhythm of the practices of extraction of natural resources superior to the capacity that these have in time to renew themselves, gives rise to one of the great threats to the natural environment: the overexploitation of natural resources.

The growing demand for resources, driven by the growth of the human population worldwide, together with the globalization of economic and consumption systems, has led to the incorporation of technological advances in order to improve and increase productivity. As a result, the natural environment is exploited beyond its capacity for renewal, which constitutes a threat to biodiversity.

If you are interested in learning more about this problem that affects global biodiversity, we encourage you to enter these other articles about:

  • Overexploitation of natural resources: causes and consequences.
  • Overfishing: what is it, causes, consequences and solutions.
  • Overexploitation of water: causes, consequences and solutions.

Loss, degradation and fragmentation of habitats

In addition to overexploitation, if we ask ourselves what threat to biodiversity it is key to talk about the loss, degradation and fragmentation of habitats and its causes.

Deforestation, driven by changes in land use -for the development of agricultural activities, the installation of infrastructures and other constructions- is the main reason for the degradation of habitats. However, the following also stand out as driving forces for change:

  • The inappropriate use of the natural environment.
  • Overgrazing.
  • Overwatering.
  • The overexploitation of aquifers and other resources.
  • Droughts and other effects of climate change, which only aggravate the processes of desertification and degradation of the territory.

On your side, the fragmentation of the territory, also marked by changes in land use to establish crops, roads and cities, with the loss of habitats, is one of the largest threats to biodiversity.

In this link you will see more information about the Destruction of the environment and habitat: causes and consequences.


Another of the factors affecting biodiversity currently it is global pollution. For example, the processes of contamination by microplastics and organic waste and discharges raise great concerns in the scientific community and in those who work directly with the resources and services that ecosystems provide. They are becoming more and more visible effects derived from pollution such as: the eutrophication of aquatic ecosystems, the proliferation of harmful algae (red tides stand out), the presence of photochemical smog in cities and the increase in atmospheric temperature and the surface water of seas and oceans.

All these environmental pollution problems affect biodiversity and the ecosystems that all living things inhabit. If you want to discover more, here we talk about How pollution affects the environment.

Introduction of invasive species

The introduction of invasive alien species is one of the major causes of biodiversity loss, Worldwide. There are catalogs, strategies and plans in order to control and have a more complete knowledge of those species that, for different reasons, have established themselves in ecosystems other than those of origin. The invasion and illegal trafficking of species are closely related and, species such as the red crab (Procambarus clarkii).

Here you can learn more about the introduction of exotic species: causes and consequences and here about invasive species in Spain and its consequences.

Effects of climate change

In the aquatic environment it is worth mentioning the water acidification and the temperature rise surface, which cause changes in population dynamics, in their reproduction and feeding patterns.

In the terrestrial environment, the aridization of the territory stands out, influenced by a greater scarcity of rainfall, giving rise to a continuous change of ecosystems and a loss of biodiversity that these house.

We recommend you read these other posts on How climate change affects biodiversity and How to avoid climate change.

How to take care of biodiversity

Once the factors influencing biodiversity, in relation to these a series of biodiversity conservation strategies:

  • Within the framework of desertification, implanting vegetation cover to achieve the protection and fixation of the soils, which is tolerant to extreme aridity conditions, is a strategy for adaptation to climate change, contemplated in the National Plan of Priority Actions in the matter of Hydrological-forest restoration, erosion control and fight against desertification (PNAP).
  • To combat eutrophication processes: aeration or removal of hypolimnion, exposure of sediments to air, removal of sediments, creation of artificial wetlands, biomanipulation, etc.
  • In order to reverse the increasing acidification of water bodies, the limming method stands out, which consists of the addition of bicarbonate in lakes, banks or banks.
  • To eliminate contamination, phytoremediation or the use of plants that incorporate and accumulate in their body different pollutants such as heavy metals are very common.
  • To restore seagrass beds and reefs, transplants or artificial cultivation can be carried out. In addition, it is also important to signal with information panels the importance of phanerogams such as Posidonia oceanica and how harmful it is to remove the berms.
  • The wildlife crossings and urban gardens are alternatives to mitigate the anthropic pressures derived from the fragmentation of the territory.

For all these measures to be effective and avoid biodiversity loss, it is necessary to promote cooperation between scientists, technicians, politicians and citizens themselves and raise awareness in society. In this sense, information and visibility campaigns on environmental problems and species that are seeing their populations diminish as a result of the activities we carry out are particularly relevant. For more information, we encourage you to read this other Green Ecologist article on Biodiversity Conservation: what it is, practices and importance.

If you want to read more articles similar to What are the factors that affect biodiversity, we recommend that you enter our Biodiversity category.

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