Final report on status of forestry and agroforestry in the lower kagera, uganda

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Submitted to

FAO Transboundary Agro-ecosystem Management Programme (TAMP)

John Okorio

May 2006

Table of Contents

List of figures vi

Figure 2.1 Location of the river Kagera basin districts in Uganda vi

Figure 2.2 Soil types in the river Kagera basin districts in Uganda vi

Figure 2.3 Livestock numbers in the Kagera basin districts in Uganda vi

Figure 3.1 Transect at Bubale Sub County, Kabale district vi

Figure 3.2 Transect at Kamwezii Sub County, Kabale district vi

Figure 3.3 Transect at Mwiizi Sub County, Mbarara district vi

Figure 3.4 Transect at Kikangate Sub County, Mbarara district vi

Figure 3.5 Transect at Bugamba Sub County, Rakai district vi

Figure 3.6 Transect at Bubale Sub County, Rakai district vi

List of tables vi

Executive Summary vii

The report gives a summary of the status of forestry and tree resources in the Kagera basin of Uganda; the effects of current farming practices on natural resources, ecosystems and livelihoods; driving forces influencing resources use; and recommends interventions for TAMP to implement to address the highlighted problems in the region. The field study was conducted in October 2005 and covered the three district of Kabale, Mbarara (Kabungo) and Rakai which from part of the Kagera basin in Uganda. Prior to the field work, information from various secondary sources was collected, reviewed and summarized; and together with data collected from the field form the basis for this report. Field data was collected from transect walks and PRA’s surveys conducted in areas where the transect walks were done. vii

Results show that forest and tree resources in the basin have been highly degraded through destructive harvesting and expansion of agricultural and livestock activities in the area. The main reasons for this include the increasing levels of poverty, and lack of awareness and skills on how to manage these resources sustainably. The net result is the degradation of these resources, loss of plant diversity, and the pollution of the river bodies in the region. In some areas such as Kabale district, attempts have been made by various organizations to promote tree growing at farm and community levels. However, there are still some natural and plantation forests in the area but their access to the communities surrounding them very is limited. Major constraints to the sector identified in the study include inadequate knowledge on tree growing, lack of appropriate tree planting materials, tree pests and diseases, lack of awareness on forest regulations, drought and damage from domestic animals. The majority of the communities in the area also heavily rely on firewood and charcoal as their main sources of energy, while the main economic activities derived from tree resources include charcoal and brick burning, sale of tree seedlings, and sale of wood (firewood, poles, timber) and non-wood products (fruits, medicines). Major impacts of deforestation in the area include erratic rainfall resulting in prolonged dry seasons, reduction in crop yields as a result of serious soil erosion, scarcity of tree and non-tree products, disappearance of some species, and reduced grazing areas. vii


1.1 Forestry and Agroforestry resources in Uganda 1

1.2 Transboundary Agro-ecosystem Management Programme (TAMP) 2

1.3Objectives of the study 4


2.1 Description of the Kagera basin in Uganda 5

Household variables 6

2.2 Study areas 7

2.3Data collection and analysis 7


3.1Status of forest and tree resources in the basin 11

3.1.1 Kabale District (Bubale and Kamwezii transect walks) 11

3.1.2 Mbarara District (Mwiizi and Kikagate transect walks) 14

In Kikagate sub-county, the transect walk showed that this is a predominantly livestock keeping area with some crop production. Some areas are, however, under fallow (Figure 3.4). Few agroforestry trees are found planted near the homesteads, especially fruit trees, or scattered in pastures or crop land (Appendix 1, Table 3.10). Indigenous trees and shrubs are also found scattered in fallow and/or pasture land (Appendix 1, Table 3.11). Scattered within some banana plantations are some fruit trees such as avocado, pawpaw, mangoes and oranges (Appendix 1, Table 3.12). 15

3.1.3 Rakai District (Kyalulangira and Bugamba transect walks) 17

3.2 Effects of current practices on resources, ecosystems and livelihoods 19

3.2.1 Natural resources and Ecosystems 19

3.2.2 Livelihoods and natural resources 20

3.3 Driving forces and pressures 21

3.3.1 Household level 21

3.3.2 Community /Landscape level 21


4.1 Main challenges to forestry and agroforestry 22

4.2 Opportunities 23


5.1 Adaptation and up scaling of appropriate technologies 23

5.2 Capacity building of major stakeholders 24

5.3 Building strategic partnerships 24

During the implementation of TAMP, it will be very crucial to develop partnerships with key partners involved in natural resource management in the Kagera basin of Uganda. Such partners include those from research, development, local governments and the farming communities. Experience has shown that where such partnerships have been developed, the successes of the programmes being implemented are very high. In the area of forest and tree resources such partners for TAMP will include the Forestry Resources Research Institute; National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO); National Forestry Authority (NFA); National Environment Management Authority (NEMA); Forestry Inspectorate Division of Ministry of Lands, Water and Environment; National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS); Africare, Africa 2000 Network, World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), Community Based Organizations focusing on natural resource management and the relevant local governments in the project area. 24

5.4 Development of a communication and dissemination strategy 24


APPENDIX I - Tables 28

APPENDIX II – Terms of Reference 36

APPENDIX III - List of Persons met and Departments visited during study 36

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