The Dynamics of Biodiversity in the Korup National Park, Cameroon

Authors: Siewe Siewe*, Oklahoma State University
Topics: Coupled Human and Natural Systems, Indigenous Peoples, Land Use and Land Cover Change
Keywords: Korup National Park, biodiversity hotspot, land-use change, tropical rain forest, tree diversity, Conservation in Africa
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 9:55 AM / 11:35 AM
Room: Jackson, Marriott, Mezzanine Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Tropical forests harbor more than half of the world’s biodiversity that is systematically (directly and indirectly) being affected by anthropogenic and physiological factors. The heightened global environmental consciousness has warranted closer and more accurate investigations into these constantly changing pools of biodiversity, especially in biologically sensitive environments. In this study, we examined the pattern of tree diversity in a tropical rainforest to understand the effects of conservation policies and indigenous actions on biodiversity in a tropical biodiversity hotspot region. Using data from 180 20X20 meters plots collected at the Korop National Park (KNP) in Cameroon, we assessed patterns of tree species diversity and composition across two spatial scales. At the land-use Scale, we compared the biodiversity richness between five different land-use types in the park. At the village scale, we also compared the biodiversity richness between the four villages currently living within the park boundaries. Our results show that only the village of Bera had a biodiversity richness significantly different from the biodiversity in the other villages in the park. Species richness also significantly varies from one land-use type to another. While the results show that some land-uses have an impact on biodiversity, they also underline the importance of measurements at different scales of analysis (in this case the land-use and village scales), especially when making comparative studies.

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