GIS Based Land Use and Land Cover Change Analysis and Its Impact

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Land Use, Land Cover Changes and Its Impact on the Ecology of Rangeland: The Case of Gode, Somali Region, Ethiopia

The study district has been subjected to considerable land use and land cover changes over the last thirty three years.

In the pastoral and agro-pastoral areas, natural pasture land or grazing land is a main source of feed for the livestock.

However, a large portion of the grassland had been changed into other land cover forms, mainly to cultivated fields and woodland.

Moreover, vegetation resources have degraded both in quantity and quality as a consequence of decreased in grass vegetation cover through over-grazing and cultivation.

Due to over grazing and over utilization, these areas have been exposed to soil erosion and soil compaction.

In general, the land use/land cover changes and the declining of rangeland vegetation quality and quantity through time and space are result of demographic expansion, mainly increasing population and livestock numbers, recurrent droughts, lack of technologies that suit the socio-economic and natural conditions, and natural resources policy.

The conversion of natural ecosystems into managed agro-ecosystems resulted in deterioration in quality of the soil resource base.

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