An assessment of Human impacts on Dambo environments: The case of Shikoswe, Kafue
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Dambos are being used for various human purposes today. This can be attributed to factors such as rapid population increase, high urbanisation rate and pressure on agriculture land being experienced in many parts of the world presently. The impacts of the various human activities have resulted into threats to the existence of these environments. In Zambia dambos - especially those found in urban areas - are being turned into settlement areas or agricultural lands. This has resulted in impacts such as clearance of vegetation and soil degradation. This study was undertaken in Shikoswe dambo of Kafue as a case study to assess the human impacts on the dambo vegetation and soils. This was achieved through field interviews and surveys in the dambo area to establish the human activities taking place in the dambo and assess the nature and impacts of the identified human activities in the dambo, respectively. The obtained data in the field was analysed using descriptive statistics such as averages, frequencies and percentages. The study was done in view of improving the way dambo environments are utilized by understanding the nature and effects of the human impacts in them. The study revealed that the major human activities in the dambo as being construction and cultivation. Other activities identified in the dambo included mining and dumping activities. The major impact on vegetation is clearance of the indigenous vegetation. Whereas, the impacts on soil includes erosion, compaction and alteration of the chemical composition, leading to the degradation of the soil.
- Natural Sciences