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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Regeneration Process of the Miombo Woodland at Abandoned Citemene Fields of Northern Zambia
Author:Oyama, Shuichi
Periodical:African Study Monographs
Geographic term:Zambia
shifting cultivation
Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
External link:https://jambo.africa.kyoto-u.ac.jp/kiroku/asm_normal/abstracts/pdf/ASM%20%20Vol.17%20No.3%201996/Shuichi%20OYAMA.pdf
Abstract:In the miombo woodland of northern Zambia the Bemba practise a special type of shifting cultivation known as the citemene system, which involves collecting tree branches and bringing them into a garden area, where they are burned. Based on field studies conducted at Mulenga-Kapuli village, 27 km west of Mpika town in Northern Province in 1993-1994, the author clarifies the impact of the citemene system on the environment by analysing ecological fallow periods, the effects of burning on vegetation, and optimum fallow periods in both tree cutting and garden areas. In tree cutting areas, a fallow period of 30 years is required to reach a protoclimax stage of the woodland after cutting and burning trees (ecological fallow periods). In garden areas, the fallow period should be more than 50 years. At the early stage of regeneration, the miombo woodland species dominated in tree cutting areas, and the open woodland and chipya forest species dominated in garden areas. The difference in vegetation between the two areas tended to decrease as the fallow period increased. Optimum fallow periods, which may supply enough biomass for finger millet production and make sustainable utilization of miombo woodland possible, were estimated to be 16 years for tree cutting areas and about 35 to 40 years for garden areas. A fallow period shorter than the optimum is likely to diminish wood biomass and yield of finger millet. To avoid such situations, the Bemba have traditionally moved villages or built seasonal dwellings for citemene cultivation far from the village settlement. Bibliogr., sum.