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ISRN Forestry
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 490461, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2012/490461
Research Article

Variation in Woody Species Abundance and Distribution in and around Kibale National Park, Uganda

1School of Forestry, Environmental and Geographical Sciences, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Makerere University, P.O. Box 7062, Kampala, Uganda
2National Environment Management Authority, P.O. Box 22255, Kampala, Uganda
3Department of Natural Resources, Kaliro District Local Government, P.O. Box 56, Kaliro, Uganda

Received 14 April 2012; Accepted 6 June 2012

Academic Editors: M. Kitahara, G. Martinez Pastur, and F.-R. Meng

Copyright © 2012 Paul Okiror et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Several protected areas in Uganda are increasingly facing encroachment making farmlands indispensable hubs for biodiversity conservation. A comparative study was conducted comprising a protected area in Kibale National Park and surrounding farmlands to establish how farmlands mimic the forest floristic structure. Study results show very low similarity between the forest and farmland ecosystems (). A total of 50 and 29 species were identified in the forest and, farmland, respectively; 8 were shared. Importance value indices of woody species in the forest ranged from 0.3 to 29.9 with Celtis durandii being the most important while those in the farmland were 1.9–79.2, Eucalyptus grandis, having the highest index. Woody species diversity and evenness were higher in the forest ecosystem (, ) compared to the farmland (, ). The 10–<20 cm diameter class was the lowest in both ecosystems. Communities adjacent to the park should be educated about the value of the park and conservation in general. Since adjacent farmlands provide important ecotones to the park, on-farm indigenous tree retention and planting are required. Further research on threatened species is needed to enhance conservation in and around KNP.