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What is biodiversity?

Biodiversity collectively describes the vast array of approximately 9 million unique living organisms (including Homo sapiens) that inhabit the earth, together with the interactions amongst them (CSIRO, 2012).

The concept includes every species of bacteria, virus, plant, fungi, and animal, as well as the diversity of genetic material within each species. It also encompasses the diverse ecosystems the species make up and the ongoing evolutionary processes that keep them functioning and adapting.

The CSIRO has produced explainers, including videos about biodiversity, what it includes and why it is important.

See the Biodiversity Explainer for more information.

View the Biodiversity Video Playlist from CSIRO below.



For more detailed information on Biodiversity with a focus on Australia, see the CSIRO book, Biodiversity: Science and Solutions for Australia , which aims to provide the latest scientific knowledge on Australia’s biodiversity in an engaging and clear format. The book describes the ancient origins and unique features of Australia’s plants, animals and ecosystems, and looks at how they are currently tracking. This book is free to download as a pdf or e-book, from the CSIRO here : www.csiro.au/biodiversitybook