Comparing the distribution, harvesting and regeneration of Beta vulgaris in the Owabi wildlife sanctuary and the adjacent agricultural farmlands in the Atwima District of Ghana

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Research Paper 01/05/2012
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Comparing the distribution, harvesting and regeneration of Beta vulgaris in the Owabi wildlife sanctuary and the adjacent agricultural farmlands in the Atwima District of Ghana

Martin Amoah
J. Bio. Env. Sci.2( 5), 50-60, May 2012.
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Abstract

Deforestation of tropical forests through timber harvest has been described as one of the major causes of global warming and carbon emission. Bamboo conservation presents an alternative strategy for ameliorating the effect of forest tree loss in the tropics. The purpose of this study was to compare the distribution, harvesting and regeneration of B. vulgaris in harvested and non-harvested sites. It also aimed at assessing the effect of seasonal changes on the regeneration levels of B. vulgaris in harvested and non-harvested sites. The two sites were located in the Owabi wildlife sanctuary and theadjacent agricultural farmlands in the Atwima district of Ghana where B. vulgaris is in abundance. Using adaptive sampling method, 25 and 35 plots measuring 50x50m were installed in the sanctuary and on the agricultural farmlands, respectively. The population and regenerative capacity of bamboo culms in each site were determined by counting the number of shoots, young, mature, dead and harvested culms in each clump in the sampled plots. The results showed that two out of three (67.9%) of the culms on the farmlands were harvested with the number of harvested culms averaged 64.0±14.12% per clump, while mature and dead culms in the sanctuary averaged 32.0±13.96% and 26.5±20.28%, respectively. Site (harvested versus non-harvested) did not have a significant effect on the regeneration of juvenile culms, while the effects of seasonal changes and the interaction between the sites and seasonal changes were significant, with the bamboo on the farmlands responding more positively to regeneration of juvenile culms (11.7%) than those in the sanctuary (3.6%). The average ratio of juvenile culm production to the number of mature culms per clump before rainy season was 3:10 compared with 8:10 at the end of the rainy season, suggesting that the presence of mature culms could potentially stimulate the regeneration of juvenile culms. Despite the ability of mature culms to stimulate culm regeneration, the contribution of non-harvested site to regeneration was far less compared to that of harvested site. It seems reasonable to conclude that optimum regeneration of culms could be achieved if older culms are harvested.

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