Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

Fifty years of deforestation and forest fragmentation in Madagascar

  • GRADY J. HARPER (a1), MARC K. STEININGER (a1), COMPTON J. TUCKER (a2), DANIEL JUHN (a1) and FRANK HAWKINS (a1) (a3)...
Abstract
SUMMARY

Tropical deforestation is a key contributor to species extinction and climate change, yet the extent of tropical forests and their rate of destruction and degradation through fragmentation remain poorly known. Madagascar's forests are among the most biologically rich and unique in the world but, in spite of longstanding concern about their destruction, past estimates of forest cover and deforestation have varied widely. Analysis of aerial photographs (c. 1953) and Landsat images (c. 1973, c. 1990 and c. 2000) indicates that forest cover decreased by almost 40% from the 1950s to c. 2000, with a reduction in ‘core forest’ > 1 km from a non-forest edge of almost 80%. This forest destruction and degradation threaten thousands of species with extinction. Country-wide coverage of high-resolution validated forest cover and deforestation data enables the precise monitoring of trends in habitat extent and fragmentation critical for assessment of species' conservation status.

Copyright
Corresponding author
*Correspondence: Grady Harper Tel: +1 703 341 2761 Fax: +1 703 979 2514 e-mail: gharper@conservation.org
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

T.M. Brooks , S.L. Pimm & J.O. Oyugi (1999) Time lag between deforestation and bird extinction in tropical forest fragments. Conservation Biology 13 (5): 11401150.

M.A. Cochrane (2001) Synergistic interactions between habitat fragmentation and fire in evergreen tropical forests. Conservation Biology 15 (6): 15151521.

G. Cowlishaw (1999) predicting the pattern of decline of African primate diversity: an extinction debt from historical deforestation. Conservation Biology 13 (5): 11831193.

L. Cullen , R.E. Bodmer & C.V. Padua (2000) Effects of hunting in habitat fragments of the Atlantic forests, Brazil. Biological Conservation 95 (1): 4956.

M. Enserink (1999) Biological invaders sweep in. Science 285 (5435): 18341836.

L. Jarosz (1993) Defining and explaining tropical deforestation: shifting cultivation and population-growth in colonial Madagascar (1896–1940). Economic Geography 69 (4): 366379.

C.A. Kull (2000) Deforestation, erosion, and fire: degradation myths in the environmental history of Madagascar. Environment and History 6 (4): 423450.

P. Mayaux , V. Gond & E. Bartholome (2000) A near-real time forest-cover map of Madagascar derived from SPOT-4 VEGETATION data. International Journal of Remote Sensing 21 (16): 31393144.

P. Mayaux , P. Holmgren , F. Achard , H. Eva , H.-J. Stibig & A. Branthomme (2005) Tropical forest cover change in the 1990s and options for future monitoring. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London Series B-Biological Sciences 360 (1454): 373384.

N. Myers , R.A. Mittermeier , C.G. Mittermeier , da G.A.B. Fonseca & J. Kent (2000) Biodiversity hotspots for conservation priorities. Nature 403 (6772): 853858.

J.R.G. Townshend & C.O. Justice (1988) Selecting the spatial resolution of satellite sensors required for global monitoring of land transformations. International Journal of Remote Sensing 9 (2): 187236.

C.J. Tucker & J.R.G. Townshend (2000) Strategies for monitoring tropical deforestation using satellite data. International Journal of Remote Sensing 21 (6–7): 14611471.

C.J. Tucker , D.M. Grant & J.D. Dykstra (2004) NASA's global orthorectified Landsat data set. Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing 70 (3): 313322.

J.E.M. Watson , R.J. Whittaker & T.P. Dawson (2004) Avifaunal responses to habitat fragmentation in the threatened littoral forests of south-eastern Madagascar. Journal of Biogeography 31: 17911807.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Environmental Conservation
  • ISSN: 0376-8929
  • EISSN: 1469-4387
  • URL: /core/journals/environmental-conservation
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords:

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 47
Total number of PDF views: 445 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 1482 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 27th May 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.