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Species diversity and abundance of Avifauna in and around Hombolo Wetland in Central Tanzania

Abstract

Geofrey E. Soka, Pantaleo K. T. Munishi and Mgina B. Thomas1

This study assessed the species composition, relative abundance and species diversity of avifauna found in wetland and terrestrial habitats in and around Hombolo Lake. Transect walk, point transect and direct observation methods were deployed for birds’ survey. Sampling sites were established following the established transect on the terrestrial area and on the edge around the lake, with an interval of 200 m apart. A total of 67 species, 28 families and 12 orders were identified. Family Ploceidae had the highest number of bird species (nine species) followed by Charadriidae (seven species), Ardeidae and Sturnidae (five species) each and Estrildidae, Nectariniidae and Anatidae (three species) each. Species abundance and diversity varied between the two habitats. Terrestrial habitat had the high species abundance and diversity compared to aquatic habitat. Shannon's diversity index indicated that terrestrial habitat had higher species diversity (H’=3.323) than aquatic habitat (H’=1.938). The study shows that habitat destruction due to anthropogenic activities including expansion of settlements, agriculture and livestock grazing were the main threats to the survival of the birds in and around Hombolo Lake.

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