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Title: Ecological Impacts of Bush Encroachment on Rangeland Ecosystem: The Case of Hallona and Medhacho Pastoralist Associations in Borana Lowlands.
Authors: Niguse, Bekele Dirbaba
Advisors: Dr. Mekuria Argaw
Keywords: Ecological
Borana Lowlands
Bush Encroachment on Rangeland Ecosystem: The Case of Hallona and Medhacho
Copyright: Dec-2008
Date Added: 2-May-2012
Publisher: AAU
Abstract: The Borana rangeland has been an important area of cattle production in Ethiopia. However recent dominance by woody cover is considered as a threat to range conditions in the area. A multidisciplinary approach was followed to assess impacts of bush encroachment on the biophysical environment and pastoralists’ livelihood in the two pastoralist associations and and to document pastoralists’ perceptions on bush encroachment. The rangelands were stratified into encroached and non-encroached sites based on visual observation and data on vegetation and soil parameters were collected from both encroached and non encroached sites. Pastoralists’ perceptions were collected by informal interview. The data were analyzed using excell speardsheet, PC-ORD, version 4.20 and SPSS (SPSS, 1989 – 96) version 14, computer programs. Higher species diversity and herbaceous cover was observed in non-encroached site. Increase in woody plant density might have limited survival rate and percent cover of some light loving herbaceous species in encroached site. In both encroached and non-encroached lands a total of 94 plant species were identified, which included 26 woody and 68 herbaceous species. The density of woody plant was greater than 2500 tree equivalent in encroached sites showing high threat of bush encroachment.Highly significant difference (p<0.05) was observed in organic carbon, organic matter and exchangeable potassium contents between encroached and non- encroached sites. Litter fall and decomposition in encroached site might have contributed to the differences. No clear relationships were observed between woody plant density and soil parameters. According to the pastoralists bush encroachment is one of the major constraints to livestock production and cause of feed shortage. Pastoralists were suggested fire, bush clearing and herd diversification as the major solutions for bush encroachment. It was concluded that alteration of local rangeland habitat by bush encroachment might have caused local lose of some herbaceous species. The value of most soil nutrients was higher in encroached site. Implementation of holistic approach that involves the whole community and experts to control expansion of bush encroachment and improving livestock productivity and marketing system to decrease the contribution of over grazing to bush encroachment was recommend as possible solution.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/2047
Appears in:Thesis - Environmental Sciences

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