What is Agriculture Biodiversity? Agro-biodiversity Hotspots of India

What is Agriculture Biodiversity?

Agricultural biodiversity is a broad term that includes all components of biological diversity of relevance to food and agriculture, and all components of biological diversity that constitute the agricultural ecosystems, also named agro-ecosystems: the variety and variability of animals, plants and micro-organisms, at the genetic, species and ecosystem levels, which are necessary to sustain key functions of the agro-ecosystem, its structure and processes (COP decision V/5, appendix).

Agricultural biodiversity is the outcome of the interactions among genetic resources, the environment and the management systems and practices used by farmers. This is the result of both natural selection and human inventive developed over millennia.The following dimensions of agricultural biodiversity can be identified:1) Genetic resources for food and agriculture:

  • Plant genetic resources, including crops, wild plants harvested and managed for food, trees on farms, pasture and rangeland species,
  • Animal genetic resources, including domesticated animals, wild animals hunted for food, wild and farmed fish and other aquatic organisms,
  • Microbial and fungal genetic resources.

These constitute the main units of production in agriculture, and include cultivated and domesticated species, managed wild plants and animals, as well as wild relatives of cultivated and domesticated species.2) Components of biodiversity that support ecosystem services upon which agriculture is based. These include a diverse range of organisms that contribute, at various scales to, inter alia, nutrient cycling, pest and disease regulation, pollination, pollution and sediment regulation, maintenance of the hydrological cycle, erosion control, and climate regulation and carbon sequestration.3) Abiotic factors, such as local climatic and chemical factors and the physical structure and functioning of ecosystems, which have a determining effect on agricultural biodiversity.4) Socio-economic and cultural dimensions. Agricultural biodiversity is largely shaped and maintained by human activities and management practices, and a large number of people depend on agricultural biodiversity for sustainable livelihoods. These dimensions include traditional and local knowledge of agricultural biodiversity, cultural factors and participatory processes, as well as tourism associated with agricultural landscapes.


These are Agricultural Systems with ENDEMIC CROP CULTIVARS, important for FOOD SECURITY and MAINTENANCE of AGRICULTURAL BIODIVERSITY, linked with Indigenous communities.

Agro-biodiversity Hotspots of India

1. Cold Desert 

Western Himalyas covering Ladakh and Kargil. Upper reaches of Lahuai-Spiti districts of Himachal Pradesh.

2. Western Himalayan 

Districts of Srinagar,Anantnag,Udhamput,Riasi,Kathna in Jammu & Kashmir, all the districts of Himachal Pradesh except the cold arid region and all the districts of Uttarakhand.

3. Eastern Himalayan 

All the districts of Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Darjeeling district of West Bengal.

4. Brahmaputra Valley 

Dhubri, Kokrajhar, Bongaigaon, Barpeta, Nalbari, Goalpara, 
Kamrup,Golaghat,Darrang, Morigaon, Nagaon,Sonitpur,Jorhat, Lakhimpur,Sibsagar,Dibrugarh, Dhemaji and Tinsukia.

5. Khasia-Jaintia-Garo Hills 

All the seven districts of Meghalaya,i.e. East Garo Hills,West Garo Hills, South Garo Hills, East Khasi Hills, West Khasi Hills, Jaintia Hills and Ri-Bhoi.

6. North-Eastern Hills 

All the districts of Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and the adjoining Cachar and North Cachar districts of Asom.

7. Arid Western 

Sikar, Nagaur, Pali, Hanumangarh, Ganganagar, Jalore, Sirohi, Jodhpur, parts of Jaisalmer and Bikaner, Udaipur, Dungarpur, Churu,and Jhunjhunun districts of Rajastahan.

8. Malwa Plateau and Central Highlands 

Malwa plateau, Central highlands,the Mewar plateau and semi- arid south-eastern Rajasthan. Shadel, Raisen, Bhopal, Sehore, Shajapur, Indore, Ujjain, Mandasaur, Rajgarh Hoshangabad, Narsinghpur,Jabalpur, Mandla, Umaria districts.

9. Kathiawar 

Ahemadabad, Surendranagar, Jamnagar, Rajkot, Porbandar, 
Junagadh, Amreli, Bhavnagar, Bharuch, Surat, Navsari, Valsad, Banaskantha and Anand districts of Gujarat.

10. Bundelkhand 

Districts of Jhansi, Banda, Chitrakoot, Hamirpur, Jalaun and 
Lalitpur in Uttar Pradesh and Damoha, Datia, Panna, Sagar, Tikamagarh and Chattarpur in Madhya Pradesh.

11. Upper Gangetic Plains 

Districts of Hardoi, Sitapur, Barabanki, Lucknow, Unnao, Rae Bareilly, Kanpur,Kannuj of Central Uttar Pradesh and the districts of Maharajganj, Sidharatnagar, Kushinagar, Deoria, Sant Kabir Nagar, Gorakhpur, Basti of North-eastern Uttar Pradesh.

12. Lower Gangetic Plains 

Districts of Paschim Champaran, Purbi Champaran, Gopalganj, 
Siwan, Sitamarhi, Muzaffarpur, Saran, Buxar, Bhojpur, Patna, 
Rohatas, Jahanabad, Vaishali, Samastipur, Darbangha, Madhubani, Sheohar in North Bihar.

13. Gangetic Delta 

Broadly includes the deltaic 24-Parganas districts, and the districts of Hoogly, Howrah, Nadia, Bardhaman, Birbhum and Murshidabad.

14. Chotanagpur 

Districts of Singhbhum, Gumla, Ranchi, Lohardaga,Palamau and Hazaribagh and Santhal Pargana in Jharkhand and Mayurbhanj district in Orissa.

15. Bastar 

Districts of Bastar, Bilaspur, Durg, Jashpur, Kabirdham, Kanker, Kirba, Koria, Mahasamund, Kondaigaon, and Rajnangoan of Chattisgarh.

16. Koraput 

Districts of Malkangiri,Sonabeda,Jeypore, Koraput, Nabrangpur, Kalahandi, Bolangir, Rayagada of Orissa and districts of north eastern Andhra Pradesh i.e. Srikakulam, Vijanagaram and Vizagapatnam.

17. Southern Eastern Ghats 

Districts ofChittoor,Ananthapur,Cuddapah and Kurnoolin Andhra

18. Kaveri Districts of Chengalput,South Arcot,North Arcot,Thiuvannamalai, Tiruchirapalli, Pudukottai, Thiruarur, Vellore, Kanchipuram, Dharmapuri,Salem, Namakkal,Karur and Dindigal.

19. Deccan 

Districts of Jalna, Hingoli, Parbhani, Beed, Nanded, latur, Osmanabad, Solapur,Sangli, Gondia, Gadchiroli in Maharashtra, districts of Adilabad, Karimnagar, Warangal and Khamman in 
Andhra Pradesh and districts of Bidar and Gulbarga in Karnataka.

20. Konkan 

Coastal districts of Thane,Raigad,Ratnagiri,Sindhudurg and part of Sahyadridistricts of Pune,Satara and Kolhapur of Maharashtra, all the districts of Goa and Uttar Kannda district of Karnataka.

21. Malabar 

Districts of Kasargod, Kannur,Wayanad, Kozikode, Malappuram,  Palakkad, Thrissur, ldukki, Ernakulam, Alappuza, Kollam,  Kottayam, Pathanamthitta & Thiruvananthpuram in Kerala, Udhagamandalam (Nilgiri) and Kanyakumari districts of Tamil Nadu and districts of Dakshin Kannada, Kodagu and Udipi in Karnataka.

22. Islands 

Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep

Source : PPVFRA, New Delhi

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