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Select the correct statement about biodiversity.
A. Large scale planting of Bt cotton has no adverse effect on biodiversity.
B. Western ghats have a very high degree of species richness and endemism.
C. Conservation of biodiversity is just a fad pursued by developed countries.
D. The desert areas of Rajasthan and Gujarat have a very high level of desert animal species as well as numerous rare animals.

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Last updated date: 25th Jun 2024
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Answer
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Hint: In simple terms, biodiversity can be defined as the different variety of organisms that live in a particular area. It is not restricted to only animals, it also includes the microbes, plants, invertebrates and all living organisms in that area.

Complete answer:
Let us look at each option given in the question and try to understand all of them one by one.
First option says that there is no adverse effect on biodiversity when Bt cotton is planted in excess. This is a wrong statement as large-scale planting of this genetically modified crop can lead to wiping out of the natural cotton crop. Also, it can lead to the rise of new insect varieties that are resistant to this crop and thus have a huge impact on biodiversity.
The next statement claims that Western Ghats have very rich species richness and endemism. Endemic species refers to the species that are only present in the particular location and not present anywhere else. It is true that western ghats have a very high level of endemic species and also species richness. Species richness refers to the number of different species that are present in a particular location.
The next statement is also wrong as conservation of biodiversity is not only followed by developed countries. Even developing countries like India are a big contributor to the conservation of biodiversity. Today efforts are being done by even the poorly developed countries with rich biodiversity to conserve it.
The final statement is again wrong as desert regions are not very well known for the fauna because of the adverse conditions. There are different desert animals but there are not many rare animals in the desert region of Gujarat and Rajasthan.

So, as we can see the only right option is B which states that the western ghats have a high degree of endemism and also the richness of species.

Note:
Western Ghats is considered as one of the two biodiversity hotspots in India. UNESCO has considered it as a World Heritage Site and it is one among the eight biodiversity hotspots in the entire world. It shows a very high degree of endemism in both flora and fauna.