Zisadza-Gandiwa et al
Greener Journal of Agricultural Sciences Vol. 3 (7), pp.592-597, July 2013.
Manuscript Number: 070813705
Status of Woody Vegetation along Riparian Areas in Gonarezhou National Park, Zimbabwe
Patience Zisadza-Gandiwa1,2, Chenjerai Parakasingwa2,
Clayton Mashapa3, Never Muboko4 and Edson Gandiwa4*
1Transfrontier Conservation Areas Office, Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, P.O. Box CY 140, Causeway, Harare, Zimbabwe.
2Scientific Services, Gonarezhou National Park, Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, Private Bag 7003, Chiredzi, Zimbabwe.
3Tropical Resource Ecology Programme, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Zimbabwe,
P. O. Box MP 167, Mt Pleasant, Harare, Zimbabwe.
4Department of Wildlife and Safari Management, Chinhoyi University of Technology, Private Bag 7724,
*Corresponding Author’s Email: egandiwa @ gmail.com;
Tel: +263 773 490202
We assessed the composition and structure of woody
vegetation along Save, Runde and Mwenezi rivers in
Gonarezhou National Park, Zimbabwe. Data were collected from
62 sample plots between April and May 2011 using a
stratified random sampling design. Our results showed
significant differences in plant height, shrub density and
numbers of stems per plant across the three major perennial
rivers. However, there were no significant differences in
basal area, tree density, dead plant density, browsed plant
density, fire damaged plant density and species diversity.
Our findings suggest that disturbances, e.g., herbivory, are
affecting the woody vegetation structure in all major rivers
in Gonarezhou. We therefore, recommend for the continuous
monitoring of riparian vegetation in Gonarezhou and other
similar protected areas.
Keywords: Herbivory, perennial rivers, savanna, species diversity, woody vegetation.
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