What makes Mexico a megadiverse country?
Mexican Geographic situation, its climate variety, topography and geological history have produced one of the most impressive biological richness in the whole world. It’s calculated that around 10% of global biodiversity it’s located in Mexican Territory. This makes Mexico among with Colombia, Brasil, Indonesia, Peru, China, Congo, India and others, one of the Like Minded Megadiverse Countries. When it comes to number of species Mexico has an honorable fifth place in vascular plants, fourth in amphibians, second in mammals and first in reptiles.
The total number of species living in Mexico is still unknown. Around 65,000 have been described already but that number is way belong the 200,000 estimated total and that number might be still too conservative. From this 200,000 stimate around 85% (171,000) are invertebrates, most of them artropodes (around 86,000) and insects (78,000). There are also 5,000 species of vertebrates, most of them fish (2,122) and birds (1,250) species. Among with this, Mexico is territory for great animal migrations such as River of Raptors in Veracruz, Monarch butterflies in Durango, Whale Shark in the north caribbean (including Quintana Roo), Grey Whale in Baja California (which by the way is the largest migration known for a mammal) and a reproduction spot for 7 of the 8 known species of marine turtles.
Mexican flora by its own consist in a bit more than 23,000 species, most of them agiosperms (about 22,000 species) and above 40% of that are endemic. Talking about endemism: 84% of the 850 species of cactus in México are endemic 48% of the 940 orchids species and 43% of the 48 species from the Pinus genus. When we say “Endemic” it means that this species are only found in Mexico, and being more specific, only in certain portions of national territory.
As we said last time: every single one of this species and any other in the planet relates with many others in so many different ways that we can only estimate how many interactions could there exist. Interactions are important because they translate many times in environmental services which worth millions and millions of dollars anymore. Just to make an example imagine how much would you have to spent in pesticides if insectivore bats weren’t around and how many acres of food would be lost if this same bats were not chasing insects above them. Other example is the bees: they fertilize the flowers allowing us to colect fruits and this can go on almost forever!
Taking care of this natural wonders and wealth is responsability of every single one of us. Whenever you decide to visit our country keep it in your mind and let everyone know about this. Your grand-grand children will be pleased to know you took enough car of it so they can enjoy it.
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