Status and Trends of Biodiversity
Peru is known as one of the world’s 10 “megadiverse” countries, for its rich diversity in ecosystems, species, genetic resources and culture. Peru’s biodiversity is one of the pillars of its national economy, plays a direct role in sustaining a large part of the population, has an important role for culture, science and technology and provides essential environmental services in terms of soil fertility, air quality and water supply. Peru hosts about 25,000 plant species (10% of the world total) with 30% endemism. Of these, 4,400 species have known properties and are used by the population. In terms of fauna, Peru is first in number of fish species (close to 2,000 species, 10% of the world total); second in bird fauna (1,736 species); third in amphibians (332 species); third in mammals (460 species); and fifth in reptiles (365 species). There are about 5,528 plant species and 760 animal species endemic to Peru. There are a total of 222 endangered species of which, 31 are facing extinction, 89 are classified as vulnerable, 22 are rare species and 80 have an indefinite status. Peru is also rich in ecosystem biodiversity with the major biomes being marine, mountain, forest, freshwater and agricultural ecosystems. Peru also has very high cultural diversity with 14 linguistic families, and 44 distinct ethnic groups, of which, 42 are found in the Amazon.