East African Ecosystems and Their Conservation

By T. R. McClanahan; T. P. Young | Go to book overview

Prospects and Conclusions

In the past decade there has been both an increase in understanding of the conservation value of East Africa's high mountains, and an increase in efforts to actually conserve them. The desire to act seems to be there, but the ability to act is still hampered by a lack of money, a lack of administrative enforcement, and a lack of political will, especially at middle levels of government. It is no exaggeration to say that future economic development in East Africa will depend in no small part on the degree to which these critical mountain ecosystems are protected and understood. Research in these ecosystems, especially the forests, is sorely lacking ( 35). One bright light has been the hydrological and soils research in Mount Kenya's forests carried out by the Laikipia Research Programme ( 31, 32). If such quality research were expanded to broader ecological questions and to other mountains, it would go a long way toward filling our embarrassing lack of knowledge about the some of the most important ecosystems in East Africa.


References
1
Agnew A. D.Q. 1984. "Cyclic changes of vegetation in the plant communities of the Aberdare Mountains, Kenya". Journal of the East African Natural History Society 75(183): 1-12
2
Bekele T. 1994. "Phytosociology and ecology of a humid Afromontane forest on the Central Plateau of Ethiopia". Journal of Vegetation Science 5: 87-98
3
Blackie J. R., Edwards K. A. 1979. "General conclusions from the land use experiments in East Africa". East African Agriculture and Forestry Journal 43: 273-277
4
Butynski T. M., Kalina J. 1993. "Three new mountain national parks for Uganda". Oryx, 27: 214-224
5
Coe M. J. 1967. The Ecology of the Alpine Zone of Mount Kenya. The Hague: W. Junk
6
Hedberg O. 1951. "Vegetation belts of East African mountains". Svensk Botanishe Tidskrift. 45: 140-202
7
Hedberg O. 1961. "The phytogeographic position of the afroalpine flora. Recent Advances in Botany" 1: 914-919
8
Hedberg O. 1964. "Features of afro-alpine plant ecology". Acta Phytogeogeographica Suecica 49: 1-147
9
Hamilton A.C. 1982. The Environmental History of East Africa: a Study of the Quaternary. London: Academic Press
10
Hamilton A. C., Perrott R.A. 1981. "A study of the altitudinal zonation in the montane forest belt of Mount Elgon, Kenya/Uganda". Vegetatio 45: 107-125
11
Kigomo B.N. 1980. "Crown-bore diameter relationship of Juniperus procera (cedar) and its application to stand density control and production survey in natural stands". East African Agriculture and Forestry Journal 46: 27-37
12
Kigomo B. N. 1985. "Diameter increment and growth of Podocarpus trees in natural forests". Kenya Journal of Science and Technology Series B 6: 113-121
13
Kigomo B.N. 1987. "The growth of camphor" ( Ocotea usambarensis Engl.) in plantation in the eastern Aberdare range, Kenya. East African Agriculture and Forestry Journal 52: 141-147
14
Kingdon J. 1990. Island Africa. London: William Collins Sons
15
Levin S. 1994. "Forum: perspectives on sustainability". Ecological Applications 4: 545-589
16
Lovett J. C., Prins E. 1995. "Estimation of land-use changes on Kitulo Plateau, Tanzania using satellite imagery". Oryx 29

-423-

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