Biological diversity or biodiversity comprises the diversity of species, their genetic diversity, the diversity of habitats, and the interactions between these levels (United Nations 1992).
Due to its diverse topography and geological heterogeneity, Switzerland is home to a variety of landscapes, different habitats and a high level of biological diversity. However, due to the massive changes to the landscape and the associated decline in habitat diversity since 1900, biodiversity is declining significantly (Lachat T. et al., 2011). Today half of all habitats and a third of all species are threatened (FOEN 2017). These changes are well documented because they have been intensively studied for some time. In contrast, the extent of genetic diversity within species, as well as possible changes in genetic diversity over time, for example as a result of habitat changes, have not yet been systematically investigated.
More information on the state of biodiversity in Switzerland can be found on the website of the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN).
BAFU (Hrsg.) 2017: Biodiversität in der Schweiz: Zustand und Entwicklung. Ergebnisse des Überwachungssystems im Bereich Biodiversität, Stand 2016. Bundesamt für Umwelt, Bern. Umwelt-Zustand Nr. 1630: 60 S.
Lachat, T. et al., 2011: Wandel der Biodiversität in der Schweiz seit 1900. Ist die Talsohle erreicht? Zürich, Bristol-Stiftung; Bern, Stuttgart, Wien, Haupt.