EFFECT OF BUSH BURNING ON HERBACEOUS PLANT DIVERSITY IN LAGOS STATE POLYTECHNIC, IKORODU CAMPUS, LAGOS - NIGERIA.
AbstractBush burning has been practiced in many parts of the world, and has been accepted as an integral part of the traditional agriculture. This study was conducted to assess the effect of bush burning on plant species diversity. Three frequently burnt sites denoted 1, 2, 3 as well as a Control site denoted as 4, were selected in Lagos State Polytechnic, Ikorodu Campus, based on last burning time lapse being 5 months, 10 months, 3 years and no recent history of burning (control) respectively. Samples were taken using the systematic sampling procedure on three transects laid across 40m2 area of each site. Plant samples were taken on each transect using a 0.25m2 quadrat. Samples were collected at 10m interval. Data obtained for plants were compared using % frequency, % stand and Simpson and Shannon diversity indices. Highest plant diversity was observed in the control site being 81% and 95% for Simpson and Shannon indices respectively whereas, values ranged between 31 and 35% and 47 and 50% for the Simpson and Shannon indices respectively in study sites. Total species encountered were highest in the control site and least in sites 1 and 2. Dominance of single species were observed in all except control site with Chromolaena odorata 79.5% stand in site1 and Panicum maximum 82.5% and 79% in sites 2 and 3 respectively.