Original Articles

Influence of bushdumps on the herbaceous understorey in a mesic Eastern Cape savanna

Published in: African Journal of Range & Forage Science
Volume 15, issue 1-2, 1998 , pages: 11–15
DOI: 10.1080/10220119.1998.9647935
Author(s): M. MapumaEastern Cape Department of Agriculture, Republic of South Afiica


Studies of the effects of woody vegetation on herbaceous vegetation in southern Africa have focused almost exclusively on savannas with isolated trees with no attention given to multi‐species bushclump savannas. The influence of multi‐species bushdumps on herbaceous vegetation was investigated in a mesic savanna in the Eastern Cape. Development of bushdumps appeared to reduce herbaceous production underneath the clumps by up to 90%. The herbaceous layer underneath the bushdumps was distinctly different to that of the open grassland and it also had slightly higher quality compared to that of grassland. Effective bush control measures are warranted if these savanna areas are to sustain beef and mutton production as is currently the case.

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