Floristic Composition, Structure and Natural Regeneration in a Moist Semi-Deciduous Forest following Anthropogenic Disturbances and Plant Invasion
This study examines the floristic composition, structure and natural regeneration in three forest types: disturbed forest (DF), undisturbed forest (UF), and disturbed-invaded forest (DIF) in Tinte Bepo forest reserve in Ghana. In addition, this study also considers how anthropogenic disturbances and plant invasion affect plant species composition.
Research Goals & Methods
In each plot, all trees and shrubs with dbh (diameter at breast height) ≥10 cm and were identified and enumerated and height of all trees was determined with a clinometer. In each quadrat all trees (dbh≥10 cm) were examined for the presence of climbers (lianas with dbh ≥2 cm and vines). Trees (dbh ≥10 cm) were classified into four groups based on their height, understory (< 20 m), lower canopy (20-30 m), upper canopy (30-40 m) and emergent (> 40 m) species. The percentage canopy cover of each plot was determined by a spherical densiometer.
Conclusions & Takeaways
The dominant tree species encountered were Celtis mildbraedii and Triplochiton scleroxylon, which are considered characteristic of the semi-deciduous forest type. The presence of species such as A. barteri, B. pubescens, C. mildbraedii and G. simplicifolia in all the three forest blocks may indicate their wider range of ecological adaptation. On the basis of forest type, C. mildbraedii, C. zenkeri, L. welwitschii, M. altissima, N. papaverifera and T. scleroxylon were the dominant species in the UF. In the case of the DIF, B. papyrifera, C. mildbraedii, N. papaverifera, P. africanum and S. oblonga were the dominant species. In the DF C. mildbraedii, Griffonia. Simplicifolia and T. scleroxylon were the species that dominated the woody flora. The authors conclude that human disturbances have influenced the floristic composition of the DIF and DF to some extent. However, invasion by Broussonetia papyrifera and Cederalla odorata have not had much effect on the floristic composition of the DIF due to early stage of invasion.
Addo-Fordjour, P., Obeng, S., Anning, A.K. and Addo, M.G. 2009. "Floristic composition, structure and natural regeneration in a moist semi-deciduous forest following anthropogenic disturbances and plant invasion", International Journal of Biodiversity and Conservation. 1(2): 021-037.
- Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Department of Theoretical and Applied Biology, Kumasi, Ghana