Sustainable natural resources management and utilization: Role of forest woodlands and wetlands for sustainable community livelihood and development

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Research Paper 01/01/2022
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Sustainable natural resources management and utilization: Role of forest woodlands and wetlands for sustainable community livelihood and development

Douglas Marowa
J. Bio. Env. Sci.20( 1), 141-153, January 2022.
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Forest and wetlands are fragile communities, when human activities precede uncontrolled their roles are lost. Objective was to investigate the role of forest and wetlands as water catchment areas in Zimbabwe. Christmas Pass forest woodland and wetland in Mutare was the study site. Sample of 196 people, selected through stratified random sampling and simple random sampling, then purposive sampling for 20 key informants. In-depth interview, key informant interviews, focus group discussion, and observation was conducted. Study revealed that both forest and wetlands are important in the hydrological cycle. Noted that there are several adverse impacts brought by anthropogenic activities. Observed that water was an essential factor in sustainable forest management, and forests are crucial for regulating the water cycle. Forest woodlands and wetlands are under a huge threat for extinction, as anthropogenic activities continue to impact negatively on these areas. Forest woodlands and wetlands are a major water catchment area and there is need for catchment basin management plan for as to rejuvenate the river flow downstream. Recommended the need for best management practices (BMPs) as they are proactive and often voluntary practical methods or practices used during forest management to achieve goals related to water quality, silviculture, wildlife and biodiversity, aesthetics, and/or recreation. Noted that the sustainable management of the forest woodlands requires participatory approach of all stakeholders through capacity building and empowerment. Above all, there was need for the catchment basin to balance its role of provision of human needs and the ecosystem services.


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