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Climatic climax vegetation

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The climatic climax record is generalized and this description is summarized from the map and text prepared for the Ministry of Agriculture under the UNDP/FAO assistance to Landuse Planning Project in 1982.

A climatic climax vegetation is the vegetation that would develop in the absence of human influence and reflects the optimal vegetation of an area as determined by environmental conditions only.

It reflects, therefore, the vegetation that should have developed if the destruction of vegetation by man had not taken place in Ethiopia.

This map may be compared to the Landuse and Landcover map which shows the present vegetation.

From this comparison has taken place in Ethiopia, especially in the northern parts of the country. The climatic climax is useful as indicative of the potentials of a region for various types of landuse, including reafforestation.

The main types of climatic climax vegetation are:

• Afroalpine and sub-afroalpine region
• Coniferous forest region
• Broadleafed forest region
• Woodland and savannah region
• The grasslands region
• The steppe region
• The semi-desert region
• The wetlands
• Riverine forests
• Halophytic vegetation

(Source: National Atlas of Ethiopia)

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