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Research Paper | August 15, 2022

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Life form diversity and biological spectrum of plants along an elevation gradient in Mount Abune-Yosef, Ethiopia

Mistire Yifru, Tigist Wondimu, Sebsebe Demissew, Brita Stedje, Tamrat Bekele

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J. Bio. Env. Sci.21(2), 100-111, August 2022

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to classify plant functional types based on life forms adaptation in Afro-alpine ecosystem. A total of 31 plots were established along altitudinal gradients of Afro-alpine area within the range of 3830m.a.s.l to 4168m.a.s.l. The data were recorded in 5m × 5m quadrats based on homogeneity. Physiographic variables such as altitude and longitude were measured for each quadrat using GPS. Information on habit, habitat, and the position of perennating buds were recorded so as to draw a biological spectrum, following the concept of Raunkiaer. A total of 107 plant species belonging to 76 genera, and 30 families were identified and documented. The dominant families were Asteraceae, followed by Caryophyllaceae, Scrophulariaceae, Lamiaceae, Crassulaceae, Brassicacea and Ranunculaceae. The family Asteraceae was represented by all the five major life form groups. The dominant life form was Chamaephytes represented by 39 species (36%) followed by Therophytes, 21 species (20%), Geophytes, 16 species (15%), Hemicryptophytes, 19 species (18%) and Phanerophytes 12 species (11%). The Chi-square test showed significant differences between the Raunkiaer’s spectrums (χ2= 129.85, p < 0.001) to sub-afroalpine and afroalpine flora. Chamaephytes were with highest individual values (83.4%) and show high deviation from the Raunkiaers spectrum. The finding confirmed that the studied area was characterised by the two dominated life forms, the Chamaephytes and Therophytes, therefore the mount Abune-Yosef is characterised as Chamaeo-Therophytic. Both Chamaephytes and Therophytes are characterized the colder and high altitude.

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Life form diversity and biological spectrum of plants along an elevation gradient in Mount Abune-Yosef, Ethiopia

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