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What are Biological Indicators or Ecological Indicators?

Biological Indicators or Ecological Indicators with example
Certain species of microorganisms, plants and animals have one or more specific requirements and they become very much limited in their distribution. Thus the occurrence of such species in a particular area indicates special habitat conditions, and such species are called biological or ecological indicators., since they indicates some very specific condition of the environment.

Equisetum arvense
Equisetum arvense-Indicator of gold rich soil
Certain Ecological indicators of plant species

No Name of species Indicator (s) of
1 Petridium sp Burnt and highly disturbed coniferous forest
2 Pines and junipers Uranium rich soil
3 Spermacoce strica iron rich soil
4 Crotalaria cobalticola and Silene cobalticola Cobalt rich soil
5 Equisetum plebejum and
E arvense
Gold rich soil
6 Zizyphus rotundifolia soil deposition
7 Lippia nodiflora and Rumex sp Nitrate rich soil
8 Atriplen, Salsola and Saueda Saline water condition
9 Woodfordio foribunda and Chloris virgata High lime content soil
10 Rumex acetosella Acid grassland soil

Besides plants, certain microorganisms serve as ecological indicators
For example, Escherichia coli, a bacterium, is an index organism for aquatic pollution.Some species of diatoms indicate the degree of sewage pollution of lakes. The presence of fusilinids in the soil indicate the petroleum deposits.
Certain animal species serve are ecological indicators.Chironomid larvae and maggots increase in number as the pollution increases. Burrowing may fly Hexagenia serves as indicator for well oxygenated aquatic environments.

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