International Day for Biological Diversity
Photo credit: Rachel Powell
May 22nd is the International Day for Biological Diversity, and the theme this year is “Our Solutions are in Nature.”
The California Floristic Province is one of 36 biodiversity hotspots in the world, due to its unique climate and geologic history, high numbers of native and endemic species, and severe loss of natural vegetation. There are over 5500 plant species native to California, and 40% of these are endemic—they are found nowhere else in the world. California is also home to almost 40 million people, and some of the most densely populated regions of the state are also centers of high biodiversity.
Biological diversity contributes to many important ecosystem services, such as pollination, water filtration, carbon sequestration, and recreation. Diverse ecosystems are also more resilient and will likely play important roles in our efforts to mitigate and adapt to a changing climate.
Here at the California Natural Diversity Database, we strive to provide the best available data on rare and sensitive species in order to help preserve California’s rich biodiversity. To learn more about the California Biodiversity Initiative and other ways that the department is working to promote biodiversity, visit the CDFW Biodiversity web page.