The term ‘fauna’ is basically used for animal life. Faunal wealth of India is also very diverse and rich.
The total number of animals is estimated at 81,000 representing about 6.4 per cent of world’s faunal wealth. India’s faunal diversity includes over 5,000 molluscs and about 57,000 species of insects. India represents rich and diverse fauna.
India has about 350 mammalian species, which is about 7.6 per cent of world’s mammalian species (Table 1.5).
India is very rich and diverse in terms of bird’s species as it contains about 1,224 species, which is about 12.6 per cent of world’s total known bird’s species. Similarly, fish’s diversity is very rich as India represents about 11.7 per cent of total world’s fish species.This is attributed to the fact that India has water bodies located in diverse geographical and climatic conditions. Also, India is very rich in reptiles and amphibian species. The endemism of faunal diversity is very high, about 6.2 per cent.
Very little is known about the extent of diversity of micro-organisms, particularly the bacteria and virus. Consolidated data on bacteria and viruses are to be complied. Detailed survey has to be made about the aquatic biota related to 14 major, 44 medium and 55 minor river systems.Degradation of forests and other natural resources in India has put various species under varying degrees of threats. About 86 mammalian species, 70 bird species and 25 species of reptiles are facing threat of extinction. Also amphibians and fish are under threat (Table 1.7).