BEWARE OF FAKE INSTITUTES WITH SIMILAR NAMES. blank    blank
banner

Lichens: Effective Tools for Environmental Monitoring



  Feb 24, 2024

Lichens: Effective Tools for Environmental Monitoring



Biomonitors and Bioindicators

Q: What are biomonitors and bioindicators?

Bioindicators: Living organisms that provide qualitative information about the environmental health (e.g., fish health indicating clean water).

Biomonitors: Living organisms that quantify the presence and level of pollutants in the environment (e.g., lichen levels revealing the extent of air pollution).

Q: Why are lichens considered valuable biomonitors?

Lichens are particularly effective biomonitors due to several key characteristics:

High sensitivity to pollutants: Lichens readily react to changes in air quality by exhibiting altered growth patterns, decreased vitality, or even complete absence in areas with high levels of pollution.

Direct absorption of pollutants: Unlike organisms like fish that rely on indirect exposure, lichens absorb pollutants directly from the atmosphere, accurately reflecting the surrounding environment's condition.

Bioaccumulation capabilities: Lichens accumulate pollutants within their tissues, allowing scientists to measure the actual quantity of contaminants present, providing a valuable quantitative assessment.

Q: What types of environmental alterations can lichens monitor?

Air pollution: Lichens are particularly sensitive to specific air pollutants like sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and heavy metals, providing valuable information about air quality.

Nutrient levels: Lichens can also indicate changes in nutrient levels, such as excess nitrogen deposition, acting as sentinels for potential ecosystem imbalances.

Q: How does this differ from the role of fish as bioindicators?

Fish primarily serve as bioindicators, providing information about the overall health of an aquatic ecosystem based on their health and presence. However, unlike lichens, fish cannot readily quantify the specific levels of pollutants present in the environment.

In conclusion:

Lichens offer a unique and valuable tool for environmental monitoring due to their sensitivity, direct absorption capabilities, and bioaccumulation properties. They act as effective "pollution gauges" in the environment, providing scientists with crucial insights into both the presence and quantitative extent of various environmental contaminants.


Share:
 

Get a call back

Fill the below form to get free counselling for UPSC Civil Services exam preparation

 
UPSC DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS

 
INDIA’S CAPITAL MARKET REFORMS
 
ENERGY EFFICIENCY SERVICES LIMITED (EESL)
 
INDIA’S NEED FOR BATTERY STORAGE IN ENERGY TRANSITION
 
DEDICATED FREIGHT CORRIDORS
 
Committee for Base Year Revision of CPI and WPI Price Indices
 
Preserving India’s Ecological Treasures: Biodiversity Heritage Sites
 
Senna Spectabilis: The Invasive Species
 
India Maritime Centre
 
Two faces of the moon and Change 6
 
Sindhu Sarasvati and Indus Sarasvati Civilisation
 
Ladakh's Ancient Rock Art:
 
PARAMARA DYNASTY: CULTURAL CONTRIBUTIONS AND LEGACY
 
PARAMARA DYNASTY: INDIAN HISTORY
 
Circadian Rhythms
 
Morning Sunlight and Circadian Rhythms