Floristic diversity in fragmented Afromontane rainforests: altitudinal variation and conservation importance

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Christine B. Schmitt, Manfred Denich, Sebsebe Demissew, Ib Friis, Hans Jürgen Boehmer

Ordination and indicator species analyses showed gradual variations in floristic diversity along the altitudinal gradient with a pronounced shift in species composition at ca. 1830 m. Upper montane forest is characterized by high fern diversity and indicator species that are Afromontane endemics. Lower montane forest (o1830 m) exhibits a greater diversity of tree species and a higher abundance of the flagship species Coffea arabica. Conclusions: Our results provide crucial ecological background information concerning the montane rainforests of Ethiopia, which have been poorly studied until now. We conclude that both forest types identified during this study need to be considered for conservation because of their particular species compositions. Owing to the high degree of forest fragmentation, conservation concepts should consider a multi-site approach with at least two protected areas at different altitudinal levels.

Original languageEnglish
JournalApplied Vegetation Science
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)291-304
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 2010

ID: 20854476