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Table of ContentWhat are Endemic Species?
List of Endemic Species In India
Invasive Animal Species
What are Alien Invasive Species?
The concept of endemic species is related to the habitat and geographical location of species. If a species of animal is located in one particular geographic location and nowhere else on the planet. Then the ecologist term such species endemic to a particular area. Endemic species are those that live in a limited area, such as a mountain range, lake or island, among others. Endemism is linked to historical and ecological factors and is different from the indigenous species. While the endemic species may not have originated in a particular area but now are found in that area only. The indigenous species trace their origin to a geographical location. i.e. - In biogeography, a native species is indigenous to a given region or ecosystem if its presence in that region is the result of only local natural evolution (though often popularised as "with no human intervention"
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There are a number of endemic species of animals in India. Let's have a look at endemic species and their geographical distribution within India
|Endemic Species||Exam Related Information|
|Asiatic Lion||The Indian lions are listed as endangered and only found in and around Gir Forest National Park of Gujarat. Gujarat Lion is one of five big cats that inhabit India others being the Bengal Tiger and Indian Leopards|
|Kashmir Stag also known as Hangul is the only species of elk native to India and found in dense riverine forests of Dachigam National Park, Kashmir Valley of Jammu & Kashmir and Chamba in Himachal Pradesh.|
|Lion Tailed Macaque is India’s endangered primate species and also ranks among the rarest and most threatened monkey, endemic to the Western Ghats of South India.|
|Nilgiri Tahr||Endangered and endemic to the Nilgiri Hills of the Western Ghats. The Nilgiri ibex closely related to the sheep, inhabits the open montane grassland habitat in Tamil Nadu and Kerala.|
|Purple Frog||found only in the rainforest of Western Ghats in India and spends most of its life underground.|
|Pygmy Hog||critically endangered species - found only in Assam.|
|Bronze headed vine snake or Western Ghats bronzeback||grassland snake and mildly venomous species, found in the Nilgiri Hills|
|Nilgiri Blue Robin||endemic to the Shola forest of southern India. This small passerine bird found to occur only above 1200 m altitude in high altitude grasslands of Western Ghats.|
|Malabar Large Spotted Civet||The Western Ghats.|
|Anaimalai flying frog||This frog is endemic to the Anaimalai Hills of Tamil Nadu|
|Namdapha Flying Squirrel||found only in Namdapha National Park of Arunachal Pradesh. The arboreal and nocturnal squirrel population is not known.|
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- List of First In India: Defence, Science, Governance, Sports
Here are a few invasive species of animals and fishes. The invasive species are not naturally found in an ecosystem os habitat but due to Human-induced mitigations or climate change, they occupy the niche of other species and dominate the food web as they do not face the threat of species higher in the food chain. Often due to various factors, they thrive at the cost of other species. The invasive species in India are
|Name||State / Region||Native to||Affected area|
|African apple snail||Andaman and Nicobar||It is now found across country and is threatening the habitat of several native species.|
|Papaya Mealy Bug||Assam||Mexico and Central America,||Destroyed huge crops of Papaya|
|Cotton Mealy Bug||Deccan||North America||Affected cotton crops|
|Amazon sailfin catfish||West Bengal||Fish population in the wetlands of Kolkata.|
|Black Wattle||Western Ghats||South East Australia||It is distributed in forests and grazing lands in high altitude areas|
|Water Hyacinth||It is found throughout India||Tropical America||Aggressive colonizer. Abundant in still or slow floating waters. A nuisance for an aquatic ecosystem.|
|Black Mimosa||Himalaya, Western Ghats||Tropical North America||Aggressive colonizer. It invades watercourses and seasonally flooded wetlands.|
|Parthenium/ Congress grass, Parthenium||It is found throughout India||Tropical North America||Aggressive colonizer. A common weed of cultivated fields, forests, overgrazed pastures, wastelands, and gardens.|
|Cannibal Snail / Rosy wolf snail||–||Native to the southeastern United States.||Indian Ocean|
|Indian Bullfrog||Andaman and Nicobar||Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan||Threat to marine species, especial small endemic vertebrates|
|Lantana camara||In the Bandipur National Park, Karnataka||South America||It hinders the growth of native vegetation that herbivores such as deer and elephants feed on. Further, its fruit is toxic to animals|
Endemic Species: Examples
A species can become endemic to a specific region in a number of different ways. Due to modifications made to its natural habitat, a widely dispersed population may vanish from a number of places. Predator populations may have increased due to human activity, climate change, or a combination of these factors.
Until a species is forcibly constrained to a single place, all other members of the species that were formerly widely dispersed over the globe begin to go extinct.
For instance, small islands are home to endemic species like the lemurs of Madagascar and the Galápagos tortoises. Larger-scale big islands also offer the same remoteness.
We can locate many endemic species across the vast landmasses of Antarctica, Hawaii, and Australia. Examples include kangaroos, which are native to Australia, and polar bears, which are native to the Arctic.
In the case of endemic plants, habitat loss can occasionally cause species to become endemic. Since it is now almost entirely restricted to California, the Redwood Forest on the West Coast of the United States has turned into an endemic species. Redwoods once covered a large portion of the United States, but they are now only found in a small conservation area due to logging.
On the other hand, diseases can also be endemic. A disease that is endemic to a certain population may be geographically isolated or isolated to that population. Because it primarily affects a few isolated regions of Africa, malaria is an example of an endemic disease.
- A species introduced outside of its natural range is considered an alien species. Experts claim that alien species become "invasive" when they are unintentionally or knowingly brought outside of their normal habitats, where they outcompete the local species and disturb the ecological equilibrium.
- The ability to adapt physiologically to new conditions, also known as phenotypic plasticity, is one of the most common traits of invasive species. These traits include rapid reproduction and growth, high dispersal ability, ability to survive on various food types, in a wide range of environmental conditions, and ability to reproduce quickly.
- The invasive alien species are not a part of the ecosystem. They might hurt the economy, the environment, or even people's health.