Biodiversity is a term used to represent the total number of all life forms on our planet. This term includes all existent varieties of microbes, plants, animals, and fungi and all the genetic information they represent. Biodiversity entered into popular use with the publication of a volume edited by E. O. Wilson in 1988 titled Biodiversity and is a contraction of the term biological diversity. While there is no comprehensive global database of all species, there are descriptions of between 1.4 million and 1.75 million documented species (depending on the source) with estimates of as few as 2 million to as many as 50 million more species yet to be identified and classified. While this disparity in estimates testifies to our limited understanding of the ...

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