Agroforestry Systems

, Volume 93, Issue 3, pp 1191–1203 | Cite as

Woody species diversity and carbon stock under different land use types at Gergera watershed in eastern Tigray, Ethiopia

  • Abrha Brhan GebreEmail author
  • Emiru Birhane
  • Girmay Gebresamuel
  • Kiros Meles Hadgu
  • Lindsey Norgrove


Woody diversity and carbon stock estimation of land use types have critical role for the successful implementation of climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies. This study investigated relationships between woody species diversity and carbon stock in different land use types. Three land use types (area exclosure, homestead agroforestry and woodlot) were selected in the Gergera watershed, Tigray, Ethiopia. A total of 45 sample plots were established using stratified random sampling, 15 plots in each land use types. Vegetation parameters such as diameter at breast height, diameter at stump height, tree height and species type were recorded. Woody species diversity and carbon stocks significantly varied among the land use types. Woody species diversity, species richness and species density were significantly higher in exclosure compared to the other land use types. Mean above-ground woody species carbon stock in woodlot (8.79 ± 7.72) was significantly higher than both in exclosure (2.29 ± 2.73) (p = 0.002) and homestead agroforestry (4.17 ± 4.18) (p = 0.022) and similarly had higher below ground woody species carbon stock than the other two systems. However, there were no significant difference among exclosure and homestead agroforestry in total carbon stock. There were a significant relationship between woody species diversity and carbon stock (R2 = − 0.349, p = 0.019) in each land use types. Land-use change can lead to changes in species diversity and significantly contribute to carbon sequestration. Although, more carbon stock was found in woodlot dominated by Eucalyptus, this would result in water competition and other fast growing trees may be preferable.


Allometric equation Carbon stock Gergera watershed Land-use types Species diversity 



Special thanks to World agroforestry center (ICRAF), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Tigray Agricultural Research Institute (TARI) and OSF (Open Society Foundation) project under the institute of climate and society, Mekelle University for their financial support and assistance. We are grateful to the anonymous referees for constructive comments on an earlier version of this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Abrha Brhan Gebre
    • 1
    Email author
  • Emiru Birhane
    • 2
    • 5
  • Girmay Gebresamuel
    • 3
  • Kiros Meles Hadgu
    • 4
  • Lindsey Norgrove
    • 6
  1. 1.Mekelle Agricultural Research Center Tigray (TARI)MekelleEthiopia
  2. 2.Department of Land Resources Management and Environmental ProtectionMekelle UniversityMekelleEthiopia
  3. 3.Land and Water ManagementMekelle UniversityTigrayEthiopia
  4. 4.World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF)Addis AbabaEthiopia
  5. 5.Faculty of Environmental Sciences and Natural Resource ManagementNorwegian University of Life SciencesÅsNorway
  6. 6.School of Agricultural, Forest and Food SciencesBern University of Applied SciencesZollikofenSwitzerland

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