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      Biosphere Reserve Information

United Republic of Tanzania


  General Description   This biosphere reserve is situated in the depression of the East African Rift Valley in the Lake Manyara Basin in northern Tanzania. Below the rift wall, perennial springs in the north support a ground water forest (characterized by Trichilia roka and Croton macrostachyus or the yellow fever tree (Acacia xanthophloea) but also riverine habitats, swamps, woodland and alkaline grasslands characterize the area.
The human population in the biosphere reserve is estimated to over 250,000 people (1999). With most indigenous people practising pastoralism and agriculture, these are the most important socio-economic activities in the area. Ethnic groups of the Lake Manyara region are the Maasai, the Iraq and the Barbaig. Most of the immigrants in the region depend on tourism. Poaching of wildlife for meat and trophies, illegal fishing, selling of firewood and charcoal constitute threats to the biodiversity in the biosphere reserve.
The biosphere reserve was part of the UNESCO-MAB project ‘Biosphere Reserves for Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Development in Anglophone Africa (BRAAF)’ which had the objective to ensure the long-term conservation of biodiversity in including local population in its sustainable use. Several BRAAF projects aimed to promote income-generating activities such as bee keeping or to control the tick infestation in the livestock of the pastoralist communities.
  Major ecosystem type   Tropical dry or deciduous forest / soda lake
  Major habitats & land cover types   Ground water forest supported by perennial springs with Trichilia roka, Croton macrostachyus, Ficus sycomorus and Tabernaemontana usambarensis; edaphic grasslands of Cynodon dactylon; dense stands of yellow fever trees (Acacia xanthophloea) and the palm Phoenix reclinata at the edge of the ground water forest; swamp with Typha angustifolia; woodland of Acacia tortilis, A. sieberiana and Balanites aegyptiaca; alkaline grasslands characterized by Sporobolus spicatus; escarpment characterized by Ruellia megachlamys and baobab trees (Adansonia digitata); montane forest; lake ecosystem; wetlands; agroecosystems; pasture lands
  Location   03°30'S; 35°60'E
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   2,833,000
  Core area(s)   33,000 (of which Lake Manyara: 10,000)
  Buffer zone(s)   1,000,000
  Transition area(s) when given   1,800,000
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   +960 to +1,478
  Year designated   1981
  Administrative authorities   Lake Manyara National Park
  Brief description   Ground water monitoring
Monitoring Manyara escarpment water source chemistry
Vegetation of Manyara
Vegetation composition, distribution and seasonal variation relative to landscape facets
Ichthyological survey
Waterfowl inventory
Inventory of large mammals
Studies for sustainable management of Lake Manyara wetlands
Land use plan
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Abiotic factors, groundwater, monitoring/methodologies.
  Biodiversity   Birds, fishes, freshwater/inland water, mammals, species inventorying/inventory, vegetation studies/plant cover, wetlands.
  Socio-economic   n.a.
  Integrated monitoring   Land use/Land cover, landscape inventorying/monitoring, management issues, planning and zoning measures/zonation, sustainable development/sustainable use.
  Contact address    
Lake Manyara National Park
P.O. Box 12
 Mto wa Mbu - Arusha
United Republic of Tanzania

Last updated: 08/02/2002

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