Linkages Between Changes in Land Use, Land Degradation and Biodiversity in S. W. Uganda




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LUCID’s Land Use Change Analysis as an Approach

for Investigating Biodiversity Loss and Land Degradation Project

Linkages Between Changes in Land Use, Land Degradation

and Biodiversity in S.W. Uganda


LUCID Working Paper Series Number: 12

By
Derek Pomeroy (MUIENR)

Joy Tukahirwa (Ecotrust)

Samuel Mugisha (MUIENR)

Robinah Nanyunja (MUIENR)

Mary Namaganda (National Herbarium)

Nathan Chelimo (MUIENR)
Makerere University

Institute of Environment and Natural Resources

P. O Box 7298

Kampala, Uganda

December 2003


Address Correspondence to:

LUCID Project

International Livestock Research Institute

P.O. Box 30709

Nairobi, Kenya

E-mail: lucid@cgiar.org

Tel. +254-2-630743

Fax. +254-2-631481/ 631499


Linkages Between Changes in Land Use, Land Degradation

and Biodiversity in S.W. Uganda
The Land Use Change, Impacts and Dynamics Project

Working Paper Number: 12


By
Derek Pomeroy (MUIENR)

Joy Tukahirwa (Ecotrust)

Samuel Mugisha (MUIENR)

Robinah Nanyunja (MUIENR)

Mary Namaganda (National Herbarium)

Nathan Chelimo (MUIENR)
Makerere University

Institute of Environment and Natural Resources

P. O Box 7298

Kampala, Uganda

December 2003



Address Correspondence to:

LUCID Project

International Livestock Research Institute

P.O. Box 30709

Nairobi, Kenya

E-mail: lucid@cgiar.org

Tel. +254-2-630743

Fax. +254-2-631481/ 631499


Copyright © 2003 by the:

Makerere University Institute of Environment and Natural Resources

International Livestock Research Institute,

United Nations Environment Programme/Division of Global Environment Facility Coordination.

All rights reserved.


Reproduction of LUCID Working Papers for non-commercial purposes is encouraged. Working papers may be quoted or reproduced free of charge provided the source is acknowledged and cited.
Cite working paper as follows: Author. Year. Title. Land Use Change Impacts and Dynamics (LUCID) Project Working Paper #. Nairobi, Kenya: International Livestock Research Institute.
Working papers are available on www.lucideastafrica.org or by emailing lucid@cgiar.org.


TABLE OF CONTENTS

List of Tables iv


List of Figures iv
List of Appendices iv
A. ABSTRACT 1
B. INTRODUCTION 1
C. METHODS 2
D. RESULTS 4

1. Land Cover/Use 4

2. People’s Perceptions 4

a. Soil Degradation 4

b. Biodiversity Values 5
3. Results of Transect Survey 6

a. Flowering Plants 6

b. Birds 9

i. Specialists 9

ii. Change in Biodiversity with Time 14

6. Discussion 19


E. LINKAGES: SOME PRELIMINARY CONCLUSIONS 20
F. REFERENCES 21
Appendices 23


LIST OF TABLES
1. Principal features of the study areas, and sampling by land use type 3

2. Two key soil properties from the major land use categories 4

3. Changes in sspecies of large mammal as perceived by local people 6

4. Numbers of plant species in major vegetation categories 8

5. The effects of land use-cover on the numbers of plant and bird species 10

6. The effects of land use-cover on the numbers of plant species 11

7. Bird and plant species from a non-cultivated site outside LMNP 13

8. Migrant bird species per site and per habitat 14

9. Changes in bird biodiversity with time 15

10. Species turnover between 1984/87 (TCs) and 2001/02 (TSCs) in QENP 16

11. Species turnover in two savanna sites 18



LIST OF FIGURES

1. Trends in the relative abundance of the wildlife species indicated in Table 3 5

2. Venn diagrams of woody and herbaceous plant species 7

3. a., b. Bird species richness increases with woody vegetation 12



4. Transect Count data compared to Timed Species Count data in QENP 16

APPENDICES
1. Plant records from the study areas and Lake Mburo National Park 23

2. Birds from 17 sites in the 3 study areas 33

A. ABSTRACT


Like much of the rest of the world, Uganda is losing biodiversity fast – at about 10% per decade according to one estimate. The driving forces are generally agreed to be the increasing human population and the resulting changes in land use. However, the details of these processes are not well-documented.
In this preliminary study, we report on three study areas in south-western Uganda, all of which were originally savannas but which are now heavily used for the keeping of livestock or for agriculture. Land use changes were documented from remotely-sensed data and from interviews with local people. Signs of land degradation were recorded and soil analysed from a series of sites.
Biodiversity changes were investigated by using flowering plants and birds. Much of the native flora and most of the birds native to the area persist in pastoral areas (although large mammals are eliminated). However, native plants are greatly reduced in cultivated areas, where signs of land degradation are also most obvious. Comparing birds in areas of different land use, and over a period of years (using other data sources) shows that species requiring trees are prone to declines everywhere, but especially in cultivated areas.
Since pastoral lands are also beginning to change, well-managed Protected Areas are the key to survival of the native flora and fauna. Sympathetic land use practices, such as agroforestry, and corridors along roads and streams will be useful too. We suggest ideas to be tested along these lines.

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