Status of Indigenous Tree Species Regeneration under Exotic Plantations in Belete Forest, South West Ethiopia
This study assesses the diversity and density of naturally regenerated woody species under the canopies of exotic plantations adjacent to natural forests in a moist montane forest type in Southwest Ethiopia.
Research Goals & Methods
Vegetation assessments were conducted using line transects to count native trees to determine diversity; height distribution and similarity in species composition among the plantation stand using the Shannon-Weiner diversity, evenness index and Sorensen similarity index respectively. The four exotic plantations examined in this study were Cuppressus lucitanica, Pinus patula, Eucalyptus saligna, and Eucalyptus camaldulensis. The highest number of regenerating species was recorded in Cuppressus lucitanica and Pinus patula stands with 40 species and had the highest similarity to natural forests. The highest similarity index was observed between the plantation stands of Cuppressus lucitanica and Eucalyptus camaldulensis.
Conclusions & Takeaways
Compared to other studies that recommend Eucalyptus stands to other exotic species plantations for the purpose of ecosystem restoration, this study found that Eucalyptus plantations had the lowest number of regenerating species. Eucalyptus saligna stand had only 24 regenerating species compared to 40 species in both Pinus patula and Cuppressus lucitanica. The most common timber species, Aningeria adolfi-friedrchii, Afrocarpus falcatus and Prunus africana were absent under the canopies of exotic plantation stands, this was attributed to scarcity of seed sources or the ecological requirements for seed germination and seedling growth of the species.
Status of indigenous tree species regeneration under exotic plantations in Belete forest, South West Ethiopia. Ethiopian Journal of Education and Sciences. 2011;5. doi:10.4314/ejesc.v5i2.65366..
- Jimma University, Department of Biology, Ethiopia