Ecological Sustainability: Miombo Woodland Conservation with Livestock Production in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Peter Rogers RuvugaEmail author
  • Ismail Said Selemani
  • Anthony Zozimus Sangeda
Part of the Climate Change Management book series (CCM)


Miombo woodlands cover approximately 3.6 million km2 in sub-Saharan Africa and have been identified as one of the global priority areas for conservation. Nonetheless, it is debatable whether the presence of the pastoralists and livestock in Miombo woodlands is linked to the ecological degradation and resources use conflicts. Besides, the impact of Miombo woodlands utilization in relation to biodiversity and ecosystem service provision is not well understood. The current review describes the various concurrent issues underlying livestock production in Miombo woodlands and ecosystem resilience. Analytical review established that livestock in Miombo woodlands have a crucial role in enhancing food security and animal source protein requirement in the future. Ecologically, pastoralists’ presence in the Miombo serves biodiversity conservation, enhances nutrient recycling, and regulates wildfires. On the other hand, pastoralists are faced with several challenges including pests and diseases and persistent drought that leads to scarcity of water and pasture resources. Other setbacks include high enteric methane emission due to poor livestock productivity, unsustainable rangeland management practices, land tenure, and poor water management. Observations of wildlife interactions with the natural ecosystem elsewhere provide crucial evidence for the potential of livestock-woodland beneficial symbiotic interaction. It is concluded that, since there is high ecological compatibility of livestock production in Miombo woodlands, there is need to reform management policy to promote livestock interaction on the Miombo woodlands.


Livestock-woodland interaction Miombo woodlands Livestock production Ngorongoro Conservation Area Food security Animal genetic conservation Multiple land use 



This work is part of the SIDA-funded Food Security Program in collaboration with the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Authors are grateful for their financial assistance that led to successful completion of this work. Authors appreciate the internal technical review provided by Gert Nyberg that benefited the smooth accomplishment of this chapter.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter Rogers Ruvuga
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Ismail Said Selemani
    • 3
  • Anthony Zozimus Sangeda
    • 3
  1. 1.Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Animal Nutrition and ManagementUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.University of Dar es Salaam, Institute of Resource AssessmentDar es SalaamTanzania
  3. 3.Sokoine University of Agriculture, Department of Animal, Aquaculture and Range SciencesMorogoroTanzania

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