Evaluation of flora diversity and abundance in Awba Dam Tourism Centre, Ibadan, Nigeria
The study evaluated flora diversity and abundance in Awba Dam Tourism Centre, Ibadan, Nigeria. Complete enumeration of trees (>10cm diameter at breast height (dbh)), saplings, and small trees growing within 50m radius of the Awba dam was carried out. The percentage canopy cover of tree species (to the nearest 5%) was estimated by observing through the small lens of a pair of binoculars. The percentage ground cover was determined by ocular estimation (to the nearest 5%). Number of lianas or woody climbers were counted manually while grass height (<0.5 m tall, 0.5-1.0 m tall, and > 1 m tall) was measured using polythene measuring tape. Data was analysed using descriptive statistics and ANOVA at α0.05. Total of one hundred and ninety four (194) trees were enumerated with 24 species distributed among 22 genera in 16 families. Gmelina arborea had the highest frequency representing (7.2%) while Chrysophyllum albidum had the lowest of (2.1%) respectively. Trees, shrubs and herbs in RA were 14.0±0.15, 26.2±0.34 and 49.9±0.22, FA: 122.0±0.20, 9.2±0.12 and 13.8±0.46, CA: 30.0±0.18, 37.2±0.70 and 31.0±0.31 and BA: 28.0±0.16, 12.4±0.29 and 18.0±0.81, respectively. Hydro-flora were; Commelina gambia (7.6%), Marsilea quadrioflia (21.2%), Cyprus spp (7.8%), Pistia stratiole (37.0%), Nymphoea lotus (9.0%), Salvinia spp (15.0%), Ceratophyllum spp (12.3%), and Utricularia spp (4.8%). Dominant climbers and lianas were Combretum spp (2.2) and Dioscorea spp (0.8), while under-storey of small shrubs such as Chassalia kolly, Mallotus oppositifolius and Sphenocentrum jollyanum were 1.6, 1.9, and 2.3, respectively. The site is rich in flora diversity; a potential for ecotourism development. Much of the reservoir area were overgrown with invasive hydro-flora species suggesting need for effective management and conservation of the flora resources as well as the touristic capacity of Awba dam tourism centre.
Keywords: Awba dam tourism centre, Ecotourism, invasive hydro-flora species