Human Ecology

, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 27–51 | Cite as

Pastoralist Responses to Floodplain Rehabilitation in North Cameroon

  • Paul Scholte
  • Saïdou Kari
  • Mark Moritz
  • Herbert Prins

This paper examines the responses of mobile pastoralists to a floodplain rehabilitation program in north Cameroon. From 1993 to 1999, we measured changes in number of camps and herds, and the time they spent in the 600 km2 of the Logone floodplain that was reflooded in 1994. The first year, few pastoralists anticipated the reflooding or its impact, and the increase in grazing intensity was caused by a prolonged stay of pastoralists who already used the area for transit. The following three years showed a sharp increase in the number of camps and herds, which stabilized from 1997 onwards. Overall, grazing intensity increased threefold, following the gradually recovering perennial grasslands, with no signs of overexploitation of the area. These developments closely match the ideal preemptive distribution model. We also examined how reflooding affected pastoral incursions in the Waza National Park located in the floodplain.


pastoralists grazing intensity floodplain rehabilitation national park ideal free preemptive distribution 



The stimulating discussions Wouter de Groot and his comments on subsequent drafts, as well as those of Frank van Langevelde, Han van Dijk, Selvino de Kort, Natascha Zwaal, Stephany Kersten, Piet Wit, Sean Overland, Leslie C. Moore, and three anonymous reviewers are greatly acknowledged.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul Scholte
    • 1
  • Saïdou Kari
    • 2
  • Mark Moritz
    • 3
  • Herbert Prins
    • 4
  1. 1.Institute of Environmental SciencesLeiden UniversityAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Formerly at the Waza-Logone ProjectMarouaCameroon
  3. 3.Department of AnthropologyWestern Oregon UniversityMonmouthUSA
  4. 4.Resource Ecology GroupWageningen UniversityGelderlandThe Netherlands

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