|Town/Region||Mount Loleza Forest Reserve|
|Country||Tanzania, United Republic of|
|Categories||Birds, Forests, Habitats|
|Date||5 Sep 2018|
The Mount Loleza Forest Reserve (MLFR) is located 08°51′18″S and 033°25′15″E in Mbeya region, southern highlands of Tanzania. The peak of the mountain is 2656 meters above the sea level. MLFR offers ecosystem services that support the wellbeing of the communities around. It also harbours diverse of flora and fauna. Despite its importance in supporting the biodiversity, anthropogenic activities have negatively affected the MLFR ecosystem. Most of the effects are due to over dependence on the forest resources for livelihood, illegal activities and lack of conservation education among some communities. These anthropogenic activities pose the highest threat to species richness and diversity especially birds which may results to local and global extinction at large. The current management and conservation efforts in the MLFR are not showing promising results, hence conservation education should be emphasized among local communities in the surrounding areas.
Thus, this study aims to assess anthropogenic changes threatening the ecosystem health, services and birds’ population (i.e. abundance, diversity and species of birds) in MLFR; to raise environment conservation awareness and empowerment to local people bordering the MLFR through initiation of income generating activities such as establishment of beekeeping projects and tree nurseries; and to conduct restoration activities in MLFR and degraded border zone areas.
The income generating activities will improve communities’ livelihood and reduce pressure on the dependence of natural resources from the MLFR. Thus, in the end human driven negative impacts to the reserve will be reduced or halt completely, the MLFR ecosystem will be conserved and bird species population will be rescued from local extinction.
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