Assessment on Acacia Woodland Degradation in Dire-Dawa Administration, Eastern Ethiopia

Nigus Gebremedhn Abay, Matiwos Belayhun Haylemariyam

Abstract


Dry woodlands are vegetation formations which comprise of scrubs, bush lands, thickets, wooded grasslands and dense woodlands. The largest share of Ethiopia’s landmass is categorized as dryland, experiencing moisture stress during most days of the year. Hence, lowland woodlands are the largest remaining forests in Ethiopia, covering an estimated 55 million ha (48-6 per cent) of land. Beyond the socio-economic and ecological importance of forests Ethiopia experienced rapid loss of woodland vegetation annually. At country level the loss is attributed to low level of standard of living of farming community and their close dependency on forest and woodlands. Jeldessa, Gerba-Anano and Chiri-miti kebelles of Dire-Dawa administration which is located in the eastern part of the Ethiopia has a dense acacia woodland species occupying a total area of at 12250 hectare mainly found in Hurso, Jeldessa, Gerba-Anano and Chiri-miti kebelles. The dry forest which was home and source of forage to wildlife and local pastoral communities is dwindling from time to time. As there has been no study on site specific, this study was conducted to assess the recent degradation of dry land forest in Jeldessa, Gerba-Anano and Chiri-miti kebelles of Dire-Dawa administration. The study has employed questionnaire, interview, group discussions and field observation. The findings of the study shows acacia woodland vegetation of the kebelles have been subjected to degradation due to the ease accessibility of the kebelles connected by all-weather  roads has triggered fetching of charcoal. Besides, easy money making from charcoal and its rising price has anticipated poor peoples to practice it as a means of livelihood. On the other hand, concentration of livestock, recurrent drought and prosopis juliflora invasion has perceived as major factors degradation. Therefore, the cumulative negative effect of the above factors has contributed to the fast deterioration of acacia woodland coverage. To this end, all concerned body’s particularly local customary institutions, agricultural and police departments have to work in harmony on providing alternative off farm activities. Furthermore, the government induced sedentary agriculture was widely practiced along the river sides of all kebelles therefore, further study on sustainable usage of grazing and woodland forest is very mandatory.

 


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijrd.v5i1.12280

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Interantional Journal of Regional Development  ISSN 2373-9851

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