Main Article Content
The biodiversity status of most forests found in village land area is lacking. This creates challenges in planning for sustainable management of these forests. This study therefore assessed woody species diversity, composition, structure and carbon stocks of Esilalei Village Land Forest Reserve located in Monduli district in the North-Eastern Tanzania. Vegetation data was collected from 20 concentric sample plots of 5m, 15m, and 20m radius laid out systematically in the forest of 2,800 ha. A total of 29 plant species were identified. Diversity indices indicated the forest to have moderate diversity of woody species. Stand structure comprised 77 ± 52 stems ha-1, basal area of 1.82 ± 1.42 m2ha-1and volume of 8.42 ± 6.96 m3ha-1 while the mean above ground and below ground carbon stocks were 9.71 ± 8.03 Mg C ha-1 and 0.98 ± 0.79 Mg C ha-1 respectively. Despite the observed low structural attributes including carbon density, it is very important to legally protect this area as village land forest reserve to serve as a corridor and dispersal area for wild animals when moving between the surrounding national parks. Quantification of other carbon pools such as soil, dead wood and surface litter should be considered.