Quantitative Review and Distribution Status of Mangrove Forest Species in West Africa
This paper statistically evaluated the distribution of mangrove forest distributions in Nineteen (19) countries of Africa where eight major species of mangrove exist. Secondary data about mangrove forest coverage from literature were obtained in respect of 19 countries of West Africa where mangrove forest exists for six years. The data were subjected to ANOVA statistical analysis using STATISTICA software package. The results indicated highest estimates of mangrove coverage in Nigeria with highest total mangrove coverage of 7386km2 and Sao Tome Principe with lowest estimates of 1.4km2. The results indicated that most West African mangroves forests suffer progressive decline particularly the countries that have large mangrove forests. The results also suggest that most West African countries are yet to evolve conservation ethics for their mangrove forests. Of all the countries, the Nigerian mangrove forest is the most threatened by fragmentation, isolation and surface drainage alteration that could be traced to indiscriminate logging, urbanization and recent oil and gas activities in the Niger Delta.
Keyword: Mangrove forests, West African Forests, Forest evaluation
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