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Influence of Paper Mulberry Presence on Native Tree Species in Mabira Central Forest Reserve in Uganda

DOI: 10.4236/oalib.1106399, PP. 1-12

Subject Areas: Environmental Sciences

Keywords: Biodiversity, Mabira Forest, Native Trees Species, Paper Mulberry

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Abstract

Mabira Central Forest Reserve in Uganda (MCFR) is facing biodiversity loss, especially other tree species in the paper mulberry dominated area due to Charcoal burning activities and the presence of paper mulberry (Broussonetia papyrifera). Paper mulberry (Broussonetia papyrifera) in the family Moraceae or Morus papyrifera is found mostly in the production zone identified as hotspot of biodiversity in Mabira central Forest reserve. Several studies in western and East Africa have indicated that paper mulberry consumes a lot of ground water which may reduce water availability for other species and lead to reduced growth level of native species around. This study has tried to investigate the influence of paper mulberry (Broussonetia papyrifera) presence on the loss of native tree species in buffer and production zone in MCFR. The study used 1 km transects and thirty plots of 20 m × 10 m each. The index of Shannon and Simpson were used for species diversity and Jaccard similarity index was used for species similarity. The overall non-paper mulberry plant species or native tree species richness decreased significantly (76.92%) (P = 0.04) from the paper mulberry dominated area within the production zone of Mabira central forest reserve. The Shannon Wiener diversity index was 2.7 for production, 2.4 buffer and 0.8 for paper mulberry dominated area, which simply means that the paper mulberry dominated area was less diverse than the two other study sites. Seven hundred sixteen (716) trees were found in total with 56 different tree species where only one species which is paper mulberry was found 233 times and only 483 times of the 55 native species. Mabira central forest reserve is at risk of losing its natural forest in the years to come. This Impact is likely to increase with the increasing of paper mulberry planting. To avoid this the management should think on not planting paper mulberry trees within the natural forest and stop charcoal burning activities.

Cite this paper

Yamungu, A. B. B. (2020). Influence of Paper Mulberry Presence on Native Tree Species in Mabira Central Forest Reserve in Uganda. Open Access Library Journal, 7, e6399. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/oalib.1106399.

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