How is biodiversity measured?

1 Answer
Jan 5, 2016

There are multiple ways to measure biodiversity.


There are multiple ways to measure biodiversity.

Biodiversity can be measured in relation to species richness, or the number of species in a given area.

Species diversity, also called alpha diversity, is a combination of species richness and also evenness. For example, if two communities had the same number of species for a given area, but one community had a more equal distribution, that community would have a greater species diversity.

Species evenness:

Species diversity can be measured using the Simpson Index or the Shannon-Wiener Diversity Index.

There's also genetic diversity, which is the genetic variability within a species. This can be measured by looking at phenotypic traits or using molecular methods.

To read related Socratic content, check out this link on the types of biodiversity. To read a lot more on measuring diversity, see this link.