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Journal of Forest Research

, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 89–97 | Cite as

Role of homestead forests in household economy and factors affecting forest production: a case study in southwest Bangladesh

  • Rahman M. MotiurEmail author
  • Yasushi Furukawa
  • Isao Kawata
  • Mohammed Mahabubur Rahman
  • Mahbubul Alam
ORIGINAL ARTICLE

Abstract

Empirical information regarding the role of homestead forests in household economy is essential in understanding the importance of these resources. Identification of the factors that affect homestead forest production and understanding forest owners' attitudes toward key forest management issues have great significance in making appropriate policy responses to manage these resources on a sustainable basis. In Bangladesh, homestead forests are claimed to play an important economic role in rural livelihoods, but no reliable quantitative information exists. This study was undertaken to investigate the role of homestead forests in the household economy, examine if forest production and income vary across landholding size classes, to explore the relationships of homestead forest production with species richness, education level, and household size, and to assess the attitude of homestead forest owners toward key forest management issues. Results show that homestead forests contribute 15.9% of the household income and generate 51.4 man-days of employment per household per year. Production of homestead forests significantly varies across landholding size classes. It was observed that forest production depends significantly on species richness of homestead forests and the education level of forest owners. However, no such relationship was found between forest production and household size. The study revealed that farming families depend more on forest income than nonfarming families. Attitudes of forest owners toward key forest management issues differ significantly across landholding size classes. For example, although the majority of the forest owners prefer fruit species to timber species, the percentage of respondents decreased as the landholding size class increased, while the opposite trend was observed for timber species. The findings of this study suggest that diversification of forests and extension of education amongst forest owners would improve forest production. Furthermore, forest policy should address the concerns of the forest owners in different landholding classes and focus on their specific requirements to enhance sustainable forest management.

Key words

Homestead forests Bangladesh Homestead forest production Species richness ANOVA 

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Copyright information

© The Japanese Forest Society and Springer-Verlag Tokyo 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rahman M. Motiur
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Yasushi Furukawa
    • 2
  • Isao Kawata
    • 2
  • Mohammed Mahabubur Rahman
    • 3
  • Mahbubul Alam
    • 4
  1. 1.United Graduate School of Agricultural SciencesEhime UniversityMatsuyamaJapan
  2. 2.Forest Management Laboratory, Faculty of AgricultureKochi UniversityNankokuJapan
  3. 3.Dhaka Imperial CollegeDhakaBangladesh
  4. 4.Department of ForestryShahjalal University of Science and TechnologySylhetBangladesh

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