- 2013 - 2013
- Ghana field campaign
The two DAD plots (DAD-03 and DAD-04) I visited are located in the Dadieso forest reserve, near the border with Ivory Coast. Villagers respect the reserve borders remarkably well, creating a very sharp distinction between plantations and forest reserve. The forest does not belong to the wettest forest type, but could already be classified as moist evergreen rainforest. According to Jonathan Dabo (FORIG botanist), the Dadieso forest contains less exploitable species than the Asenanyo forest. Together with the rather remote location, this saved the Dadieso reserve from human disturbance.We didn’t come across any sign of human activity during our stay in this forest.
The first plot (DAD-03) was located in rather disturbed forest, although disturbance was obviously due to a natural event. Many trees died, some of them perhaps due to a flooding event as the plot is partly located in a very swampy area with the water table on only a few cm beneath the soil surface during the dry season, as witnessed during soil coring. However, the plot also features very large gaps on the higher areas located on a slope (10-40º). Most trees in these areas are broken, which suggests wind throw due to a relatively recent storm. The plot counted only around 250 stems after the 2007 census, which suggests the gaps are at least 6 years old. However, many trees seemed to be freshly broken, perhaps due to increased vulnerability to wind in the gaps, or due to a new storm between 2007 and 2013. The gaps in the plot are covered with a 2m thick blanket composed mainly of the spiky liana Acacia kamerunensis, which makes the plot very hard to access.
The second plot (DAD-04) is located only 700m from the first plot and the forest type is very similar. The plot is also partly located in a very swampy area, and partly on a slope (10-20º). Although this plot has not been disturbed in the past, it featured a remarkable high amount of recruits (more than 90), which perhaps suggests many recruits were missed during the previous census or the forest is still recovering from former disturbance.