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Population Structure and Regeneration Status of Most Abundant Medicinal Woody Plants in Mabira Central Forest Reserve Management Zones

Makerere University, Department of Environmental Management
Environ. Earth Ecol. 2018;2(1):6–11
In the rural areas 90% of the Ugandans use plants for their medicinal uses. Communities around Mabira Central Forest Reserve (CFR) harvest plants for medicinal purposes. The increased uptake of herbal medicine is a threat to the abundance and health of medicinal trees. This research determined the species population structure and regeneration status of most abundant woody medicinal plant species in Mabira CFR. Sixty nested plots measuring 20×10 m were established adjacent to transects, 20 plots per management zone. The species sampled were identified, counted, and their diameter at breast height (dbh) taken. Their density was computed. Using the dbh classes and density data, dbh distributions were established. Using Kruskal- Wallis test we ascertained if significant differences existed in medicinal plant species densities for size classes in the 3 zones. Using linear regression we got relationship between plant density and dbh. A regression analysis of In (Ni+1) against di was made to cater for the zero values of abundance per hectare. The population had a steep negative slope, meaning that it is stable and naturally replacing itself. There was a general decline in species density with dbh. The <5 dbh size class had the biggest number of individuals per hectare in the production zone. The production zone had a high regeneration potential due to most individuals being in the smallest size class. Density had a negative linear relationship with dbh. There was a significant relationship between dbh and density of species. The tree species sampled were generally naturally regenerating.
Charles Lwanga Tumuhe   
Makerere University, Department of Environmental Management, 7062, 256 Kampala, Uganda
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