Country study on burkina faso biodiversity conducted by the permanent secretariat of the national council for the management of the environment and the national

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Appendix 2 compares the situation of the taxonomic inventory to the main phylum of biological diversity according to the five kingdoms of Margulius, L. et K. Schwart (1988).


The essence of the diversity of habitats and ecosystems comes from the geographical situation and the physical milieu described in chapter 1.4.

3.2.1 physical Characteristis of the habitat

More than 80% of the Burkinabè territory rests on a large peneplain with an altitude of 250 to 300 m hardly affected by the hydrographic network. A few small chains of steep hills emerge from distances apart (GUILOBEZ S., 1985). vegetation

Because of its flora and vegetation, Burkina Faso is part of the vast Sudano-Zambian region. The flora is divided into two main sub-sets. One belongs to the Saharan and Sahelian dry flora, and the other to the Sudanese. In the extreme southwest, flora components of the Guinean wetland appear along the main rivers. Classification of habitats in humid milieu

In Burkina Faso, wetland water can be classified into three (3) categories, which are: Oligotrophic water bodies (often deep with a narrow bank, poor in coastal plants), eutrophic water bodies (they are often flat and surrounded by concentric belts of aquatic plants) and dystrophic water bodies (with water rich in humid matter and poor in mineral salts).

3.2.2 ecosystems

As mentioned in chapter 1.4.5, the present phytogeographical division shows two main domains: the Sahelian domain and the Sudanese domain, which correspond respectively to two main phytogeographical domains of the country. These two can be distinguished by their respective floral set: the Saharan and Sahelian dry flora zone (25% of the country), and the mesophile Sudanese flora zone. In the details, there are transition zones constituted by north-Sahelian, south-Sahelian, north-Sudanese and south-Sudanese sectors.

There is not yet a consensus on national nomenclature for the classification of plant formations. For the moment, plant units are classified by drawing inspiration from Yangambi’s classification of vegetation types. The following nomenclature of groups of plant formation / ecosystem/ habitat has been chosen:

  • terrestrial ecosystems (natural or artificial) : sparse forest, savannah, steppes, fallows and agroforestry parks, plantation;

  • intermediary ecosystems : formations along streams and lake banks, swamps, irrigated systems;

  • hydrospheres (natural or artificial, intermittent or perennial) : vegetation of lakes, dams and ponds, phytoplankton;

  • Specialised ecosystems: terrestrial (vegetation of sandy structures), aquatic (vegetation of springs and waterfalls).

According to the Tropical Forestry Action Plan in BOGNOUNOU O., 1993, the three main types of forestry ecosystems found in Burkina Faso are distributed as follows:

Table 15: Distribution of ecosystems


Area (ha)

% Territory

Terrestrial ecosystems

Aquatic ecosystems

Intermediary ecosystems

25 140 000

72 500






25 583 500


Source: OUADBA J. M., 1997
The rest of the country is covered with other types of environment, particularly dunes, towns, rocks, roads, etc. Some of these ecosystems or habitats have been the object of specific studies by technical services. They are:

  • The designated and State protected forests;

  • Some forest galleries along the Mouhoun River ;

  • The agroforestry parks of the Central Plateau;

  • Wetlands. Ecosystem functions

Ecosystems maintain the lives of the other categories of biological diversity, including man. The richness of a country in biological diversity depends on the importance in quantity and quality of its ecosystems. The economy of Burkina Faso, as any agricultural country, depends on the functions of the ecosystems it shelters. Table 16 shows us a few examples of these functions, which benefit the development of Burkina Faso.

Table 16: List of a few functions of ecosystems.


Role played by ecosystems

Types of ecosystems or habitats


Maintenance of fertility

Forestries, clogged wetlands

Maintenance of humidity


Diversification of production

Agricultural zones, pastoral zones, pastures, zones which can be irrigated

Prevention of erosion / Protection

Slowing down of runoff water speed and winds

Ligneous and herbaceous forestry formations

Mildness of climate

Shade, increase in air humidity

Forestries, wetlands


Availability of varied complexes

Terrestrial, aquatic.


Variation of ecological systems


Aesthetic and recreational

Diversification of species

National parks

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