Our planet earth is a home for millions to billions of living species. We, humans, share our planet earth with plants and animals. Both plants and animals are essential for the continuity of human life. Therefore, humans as a biological species exist in symbiotic relations with both plants and animals.
Humans have used plants and animals for food, shelter, companions and a lot more. For millions of years, since our ancestors, we humans have benefited a lot from plants and animals regarding different food sources, medicine, clothes and all our daily needs.
This article lets us explore more about Flora and Fauna and how they play an essential role in human life.
Explore More: Flora and Fauna
What is Flora?
Flora is the name given to the collective plant life. They provide us with food, clothing, shelter, raw materials, medicines, etc. The daily food, which we eat, comes from plants. These include grains, pulses, nuts, cereals, vegetables, fruits, etc. The existence of human life is completely dependent on plants. Therefore, there are large numbers of plant products that are used for our well-being.
Also Read: Food Production.
Useful products from Plants
A plant provides us pulses, vegetable fruits, species, medicines, timbers, oil, and other edible products. There is a wide species of plants, which offers valuable products. Listed below are a few of them:
- Sugar is produced from sugar cane and also from sugar beet, which has a tremendous commercial value.
- The cotton fabrics, which we use in our daily life, are produced from the seeds of the cotton plant.
- Coconut tree yields coir produced from the husk and are used for doormats, mattresses, carpets and ropes.
- Plants also yield spices and condiments like pepper, ginger, cardamom, turmeric, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, etc.
- The edible plants include the different parts of plants, which can be consumed either raw or cooked and contain all the essential nutrients.
- Rubber plants produce latex from their bark and are used for manufacturing tyres, tubes of vehicles and many other products.
- Plants like groundnut, sunflower, mustard, sesame and coconut are used for extracting edible oils from their seeds.
- Plants also provide us with some good stimulating and refreshing beverages. This includes leaves of the tea plant, seeds of coffee and cocoa plants.
- Myrobalans is a fruit-bearing plant species, which is also called cherry plum. These fruits yield raw materials used in the manufacturing of ink and used in the leather industries.
- The wood of coniferous trees and bamboo are used as raw materials for manufacturing paper, rayon and other commercial products.
- There are a few plant species, which provide dyes. The dyes are secreted from the roots, bark, leaves, fruit or wood of indigo, henna, turmeric, plants.
- A cork is the thick, spongy outer bark of the cork oak tree, abundantly found in the Mediterranean forest. This is mainly used as a stopper for bottles of wine and other alcoholic beverages.
- A few species of fibre plants yield raw materials like jute, hemp, flax, etc. They are widely used in textile industries for manufacturing gunny bags, clothes, ropes, etc.
Also Read: Fibre
- Other than these plants, there are a few forest trees like teak wood, redwood, Sal, mahogany, walnut and pine, which provide timber and can be used for furniture, constructions, and the process of wood production.
Refer More: Forests – Our Lifeline
- There are varieties of plant species, which are used in the manufacturing of medicines. E.g., Quinine extracted from the bark of the cinchona tree, which is used to cure malaria, medicines prepared from the roots of Ipecac are used to treat amoebiasis, etc. Certain plant roots contain a chemical compound called alkaloids.
Explore More: Uses Of Plants For Class 2
What is Fauna?
Fauna is the name given to collective animal lives. There are large numbers of animal products, which are used for our well-being. They provide us with food, clothing, shelter, raw materials, medicines, etc. The daily food, which we eat, comes from animals. These include milk, cheese, butter, egg, chicken, meat, etc.
Useful Products from Animals
- Domestic animals provide milk, meat and eggs, which are high in protein content.
- The fish liver oil obtained from the shark and cod or codlings is rich in vitamin A and vitamin D.
Explore More: Facts about Vitamins and Minerals
- A few aquatic species give us valuable products like – corals from coral reefs and pearls from pearl oysters. Fish meal is a product produced from the wastes of fish and is an essential source of fertiliser.
- Certain animal species have been trained, domesticated and used for agriculture for food production and are the primary biological capital for livestock development.
Refer More: Animal husbandry
- Microorganisms like bacteria, yeast and fungi are helpful as they provide antibiotics like penicillin, streptomycin and some chemical substances obtained from fungi. Chemicals like ethyl alcohol and acetic acids are prepared by using some bacterial species. Cultures of yeast and bacteria are used to produce vitamin B.
Explore More: Useful Microorganisms
There are a few species of insects, which provide us with :
- Silk- produced by the secretion of the larva of a silkworm.
- Shellac produced by the secretions of scale insects, which live on forest trees.
- Crimson-coloured dye carmine is derived from cochineal insects and is used in cosmetic and baking industries.
- Beeswax produced in the beehive of honey bees used in the manufacture of shaving creams, cosmetics, polishes, carbon paper, candles, etc.
Explore More: Apiculture: Beekeeping
- Cantharidine is an organic chemical compound similar to terpenes, secreted by many blister beetle species and are used in pharmaceutical industries.
All mammals provide us with
- Bone meal is obtained from the bones of animals.
- Glue is obtained from the bones, muscles, tissues, skin of animals.
- Wool is obtained from sheep, goats, camels, rabbits, musk oxen, etc.
- Musk is obtained from certain species of deer, which are used in perfumery.
- Fur is obtained from wolf, lion, tiger, bear, rabbit, golden jackal, fox, dogs, cats, etc.
- Leather is obtained from the hides of mammals or the skin of reptiles like crocodiles and snakes.
This was a brief introduction to the importance of flora and fauna in human life. Stay tuned with BYJU’S to explore more about biodiversity, types of biodiversity, their significance and other related topics at BYJU’S.