GIS- based Land-Cover Change Detection in the Habitats of the Gelada Population in Guassa Community Protected Area, Ethiopia

Eshetu Moges, M. Balakrishnan

Abstract


Information on land-use/land-cover changes in protected areas is essential for a wide range of applications, especially to analyze land degradation, runoff, changing patterns of natural resources and to resolve wildlife management related issues. Understanding the effects of the changes on biodiversity is important to reduce loss of biodiv–ersity, and to insure long-term persistence of natural resources and wildlife. In the present study, satellite imageries LANDSAT TM and LANDSAT ETM+ (1986, 2000, and 2013) were used to assess spatio-temporal land-use/land-cover changes in Guassa Community Protected Area for a period of 27 years (1986 – 2013) to identify major changes in vegetation patterns and to discuss the implications of changes in the extent of grasslands on the geladas in the area. In the study area, the extents of forest and Erica have increased, while the extents of grassland, Hilichrysum and shrubland have decreased during 1986 – 2013. Due to the effects of anthropogenic and climatic factors, the extent of grassland available in1986 had decreased to 0.74 km2 in 2013. As geladas are known mainly to depend up on grasses for food, the land-cover changes detected in the study area would lead to increased dependency on grasses interspersed in other land-cover types such as Hilichrysum and Erica habitats

Keywords


Accuracy Assessment, Habitat Change Detection, Land-use Changes, Remote Sensing.

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