Planning for Core areas of Wildlife Conservation at Gambella National Park Using Habitat Classification and Habitat Mapping

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Gambella National Park has a diverse set of habitat types, which Ethiopia shares with neighboring South Sudan and the Park is considered as one of the top wildlife areas of Ethiopia. The objectives of this research were to determine vegetation types, identify habitat types on recent satellite imageries, determine the abundance,distribution and density of studied wild animal species and study migration patterns of some selected wild animal species and their habitat use. The method used for vegetation data collection and studied wild animal species were transects lines, The data for studied wild animal migrations were collected by using satellite collars.PC-ORD software was used for analyzed vegetation data. Rapid Eye image 5m resolution 2012 was used to classify the habitats map of Gambella National Park. ArcGIS version 10.1 was used for analyzing animal distributions,density and study wild animals’ migration patterns and their habitats used. The cluster analysis classified,the Gambella National Park into 6 vegetation communities and the relative abundance and relative frequency was used for naming vegetation communitiy types. However, the satellite image had classified the Gambella National Park into 5 major habitat types.In general, the abundance and distribution of studied wild animal species to be the higher in dry season than wet season. The abundance and distribution of White eared kob were observed in all habitat types of Park. However, the abundance and distributions of Nile lechwe, Buffalo, Shoe bill stork, Tiang and elephant were observed in the wetlands of the Park.The majority of White eared kob and African elephant are seasonal migratory between Gambella National Park and South Sudan. The relevance of habitat types for successful migration of elephant was woodland in wet seasons and wooded grassland in dry seasons. The core area of wildlife conservation and Four other zones of the Park had been proposed. .


Dissertation Submitted to Office of Graduate Program of Ethiopian Institute of Architecture, Building Construction and City Development (EiABC), Addis Ababa University in Fulfillment of the Requirements for Degree of Doctor of Philosophy


Habitats type Patterns of migration and observations, Gambella National Park, Habitat map Abundance, Vegetation community, Species, South Sudan, Patterns of migration and observations