INVENTORY OF URBAN TREES TOWARDS SUSTAINABLE MANAGEMENT IN BENIN METROPOLIS, NIGERIA

Nigeria. Nigerian Journal of Forestry, 49 (1) 62 - 71

Arabomen, O. J. and Eguakun, F. S. (2019)

Abstract

Trees in urban areas have been recognized by some experts as highly beneficial to the urban populace is fast gaining prominence in developing countries. Assessing the composition such as species population and diversity can contribute to sustainable management. However, accurate and current information on urban trees which are planning and monitoring tools, are either not available or the available ones are out dated. To fill this gap, this study used a vegetation-community framework to document current information on the urban trees and the perceived benefits residents associate with urban trees in Benin metropolis, Nigeria. A total of 2 489 trees were enumerated. The minimum diversity criteria were met on analysis of the diversity of this population. The most common species recording high relative density were Dacryodis edulis (8.76%), Elaeis guineensis (6.03%), Mangifera indica (5.22%), Anarcardium occidentale (4.22%), Cocos nucifera (4.21%) and Terminalia catappa (4.02%). Notably, residents attitude towards urban trees were positive. This was driven by the ecosystem services such as climate modification, scenic appeal and flood and erosion control people associate with urban trees. There is dire need for regular monitoring of urban areas to provide current data for urban managers towards promoting sustainable development of trees in metropolitan areas.