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Evaluation of Restoration Success to Inform Future Restoration Efforts in Acacia reficiens Invaded Rangelands in Northern Kenya

Evaluation of Restoration Success to Inform Future Restoration Efforts in Acacia reficiens... <p>Abstract:</p><p>Arid and semi-arid rangelands support a significant portion of the world&apos;s human population, as well as its biodiversity. These landscapes are threatened by degradation, through loss of vegetation, increasing spread of invasive or undesirable species, or both. Efforts to halt or reverse degradation exist, but lack of monitoring and reporting of restoration outcomes hampers efforts to replicate and upscale effective practices to other areas. This paper demonstrates how monitoring can inform future efforts through retrospective analysis of restoration projects on <i>Acacia reficiens</i> invaded rangelands in northern Kenya. <i>A. reficiens</i> has encroached into productive rangeland undermining both livestock production and endangered wildlife species conservation. Using a mobile phone application, LandPKS, we assessed 22 plots across 13 restoration sites in Westgate and Kalama conservancies in Northern Kenya that had been cleared of <i>A. reficiens</i> and reseeded with <i>Cenchrus ciliaris</i>. We found that these restoration treatments led to increases of more than 25% in overall ground cover, 34% in perennial grass cover, and 60% in standing herbaceous biomass. We therefore suggest that manual clearing of <i>A. reficiens</i>, when carried out in the late dry season and combined with both reseeding and prudent pre- and post-treatment seed and soil conservation practices, has the potential to provide an efficient and cost-effective solution to help reverse habitat losses. Our use of mobile phone applications allowed rapid assessment of restoration outcomes, and the resulting data are already being used to help design restoration projects on rangelands in northern Kenya.</p> http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Ecological Restoration University of Wisconsin Press

Evaluation of Restoration Success to Inform Future Restoration Efforts in Acacia reficiens Invaded Rangelands in Northern Kenya

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Publisher
University of Wisconsin Press
Copyright
Copyright © Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System
ISSN
1543-4079

Abstract

<p>Abstract:</p><p>Arid and semi-arid rangelands support a significant portion of the world&apos;s human population, as well as its biodiversity. These landscapes are threatened by degradation, through loss of vegetation, increasing spread of invasive or undesirable species, or both. Efforts to halt or reverse degradation exist, but lack of monitoring and reporting of restoration outcomes hampers efforts to replicate and upscale effective practices to other areas. This paper demonstrates how monitoring can inform future efforts through retrospective analysis of restoration projects on <i>Acacia reficiens</i> invaded rangelands in northern Kenya. <i>A. reficiens</i> has encroached into productive rangeland undermining both livestock production and endangered wildlife species conservation. Using a mobile phone application, LandPKS, we assessed 22 plots across 13 restoration sites in Westgate and Kalama conservancies in Northern Kenya that had been cleared of <i>A. reficiens</i> and reseeded with <i>Cenchrus ciliaris</i>. We found that these restoration treatments led to increases of more than 25% in overall ground cover, 34% in perennial grass cover, and 60% in standing herbaceous biomass. We therefore suggest that manual clearing of <i>A. reficiens</i>, when carried out in the late dry season and combined with both reseeding and prudent pre- and post-treatment seed and soil conservation practices, has the potential to provide an efficient and cost-effective solution to help reverse habitat losses. Our use of mobile phone applications allowed rapid assessment of restoration outcomes, and the resulting data are already being used to help design restoration projects on rangelands in northern Kenya.</p>

Journal

Ecological RestorationUniversity of Wisconsin Press

Published: May 20, 2020

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