A study on Tree Vegetation Change in the Gum Arabic Belt: Case study Bara Locality, North Kordofan

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Suliman Osman, Awad Elkarim
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The study evaluated the existing tree vegetation in Bara locality as a part of Gum Arabic belt, with special reference to A. senegal. For sampling purposes, the locality was divided into four divisions and two villages were taken randomly from each division. A vegetation survey was carried out around each village to identify tree species, density of each species, mode of regeneration and age A.senegal trees. Social surveys were conducted simultaneously in each village to obtain peoples perception about tree species, changes that occurred in the past forty years and methods for rehabilitation of the Gum Belt. The results of the vegetation survey showed that the same tree species in Bara Locality were maintained while changes in relative densities were observed especially for A. senegal, which decreased to 2% from the reported 31% in 1995. The prevalent tree species in Bara area were Acacia tortilis followed by Leptodenia pyrotechnica, Calotrpis procera, Balanites egyptiaca, Fidherbia albida, Ziziphus spinachristi and A.senegal. The most common mode of Acacia senegal regeneration was natural regeneration by seeds. The social survey concurred with the vegetation survey and indicated a drop in A. senegal density. Drought and desertification were cited as major factors for the drop, followed by cutting, pests, over grazing and fires consecutively. Also, the social survey showed that there is a drop in the area of gum gardens, lower productivity of Gum Arabic, and substantial drop in productivity of agricultural crops. The study recommended plantation of A. senegal so as to increase its density, and to raise the awareness of local people on its environmental benefits.