Bonaventure Sonké

Bonaventure Sonké
University of Yaounde I | UY1 · Biology

Ph.D.

About

305
Publications
121,627
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
11,080
Citations
Citations since 2016
161 Research Items
8222 Citations
201620172018201920202021202205001,0001,500
201620172018201920202021202205001,0001,500
201620172018201920202021202205001,0001,500
201620172018201920202021202205001,0001,500
Additional affiliations
March 2013 - present
University of Yaounde I
Position
  • Chair
Education
September 1995 - March 1998
Vrije Universiteit Brusse, Faculty of Sciences
Field of study
  • Botany and Ecology
January 1987 - December 1990
University of Yaounde, Faculty of Sciences
Field of study
  • Botany and Ecology
January 1985 - December 1986
University of Yaoundé, Faculty of Sciences
Field of study
  • Botany and Ecology

Publications

Publications (305)
Article
Seed dispersal by frugivores is a key process which is necessary for the regeneration of plant communities. The decrease in the abundance of fruit-eating mammals due to anthropogenic pressures impacts on the proper functioning of forest ecosystems. In this study, for the first time we evaluate seed dispersal by duikers (Bovidae, frugivores and the...
Preprint
Full-text available
Tree height and crown area are important predictors of aboveground biomass but difficult to measure on the ground. Numerous allometric models have been established to predict tree height from diameter (H–D) and crown area from diameter (CA–D). A major challenge is to select the most precise and accurate allometric model among existing ones, dependi...
Article
Full-text available
For millennia, people have harvested fruits from the wild for their alimentation. Gradually, they have started selecting wild individuals presenting traits of interest, protecting and cultivating them. This was the starting point of their domestication. The passage from a wild to a cultivated status is accompanied by a modification of a number of m...
Article
Full-text available
Annonaceae is a major pantropical family with 113 genera and about 2550 species. Cameroon is one of the most biodiverse countries in Africa but its flora remains incompletely known. In this volume of the Flora of Cameroon, we describe 166 native taxa representing 163 species in 28 native genera within the family Annonaceae. A total of 22 species (a...
Conference Paper
Cyrtorchis, a Tropical African angraecoid orchid genus, is renowned for its showy white stellated long-spurred flowers, which challenge species delimitation and resulting taxonomy. Also, the genus appears sphingophilous, and constitutes a suitable model for studies on reproductive biology of Angraecoids, a first step to their conservation.
Article
Woody encroachment and forest progression are widespread in forest-savanna transitional areas in Central Africa. Quantifying these dynamics and understanding their drivers at relevant spatial scales has long been a challenge. Recent progress in open access imagery sources with improved spatial, spectral and temporal resolution combined with cloud c...
Article
Full-text available
The assessment of population vulnerability under climate change is crucial for planning conservation as well as for ensuring food security. Coffea canephora is, in its native habitat, an understorey tree that is mainly distributed in the lowland rainforests of tropical Africa. Also known as Robusta, its commercial value constitutes a significant re...
Article
Data on tropical forests are in high demand. But ground forest measurements are hard to sustain and the people who make them are extremely disadvantaged compared to those who use them. We propose a new approach to forest data that focuses on the needs of data originators, and ensures users and funders contribute properly.
Article
Full-text available
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Vegetation Continuous Fields (MODIS VCF) Earth observation product is widely used to estimate forest cover changes and to parameterize vegetation and Earth system models and as a reference for validation or calibration where field data are limited. However, although limited independent validations o...
Article
Full-text available
For monitoring and reporting forest carbon stocks and fluxes, many countries in the tropics and subtropics rely on default values of forest aboveground biomass (AGB) from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Inventories. Default IPCC forest AGB values originated from 2006, and are relativ...
Article
Full-text available
When ordinating plots of tropical rain forests using stand-level structural attributes such as biomass, basal area and the number of trees in different size classes, two patterns often emerge: a gradient from poorly to highly stocked plots and high positive correlations between biomass, basal area and the number of large trees. These patterns are i...
Article
Full-text available
Background and aims-A recent taxonomic and molecular study of the genus Cyrtorchis revealed three new species. Here, we describe one of these new species, endemic to the Cameroon Volcanic Line (CVL), and compare it to its closest relatives. Its conservation status is provided along with detailed information on its ecology and reproductive biology....
Article
Full-text available
A new species to science of evergreen forest shrub, Kupeantha yabassi M.G.Alvarez & Cheek (Coffeeae - Rubiaceae), is described, illustrated and compared morphologically with the closely similar species K. pentamera . Restricted so far to a single site in evergreen lowland forest near the Ebo Forest, Yabassi, Littoral Region, Cameroon, this species...
Article
The world’s second-largest rainforest is key to limiting climate change — it needs urgent study and protection. The world’s second-largest rainforest is key to limiting climate change — it needs urgent study and protection.
Article
Full-text available
en Regeneration of tropical forest occurs naturally and mainly through early secondary succession by soil seed banks. Here, we analyzed seed bank variation in density and diversity along a degradation gradient. We also explored the relationship (similarity in composition) between the seed and seedling banks and the overstory vegetation. The investi...
Article
Full-text available
Tropical forests store 40-50% of terrestrial vegetation carbon. Spatial variations in aboveground live tree biomass carbon (AGC) stocks remain poorly understood, in particular in tropical montane forests. Because of climatic and soil changes with increasing elevation, AGC stocks are lower in tropical montane compared to lowland forests. Here we ass...
Article
Full-text available
Tropical forests store 40–50 per cent of terrestrial vegetation carbon1. However, spatial variations in aboveground live tree biomass carbon (AGC) stocks remain poorly understood, in particular in tropical montane forests2. Owing to climatic and soil changes with increasing elevation3, AGC stocks are lower in tropical montane forests compared with...
Article
Common allometric patterns have been reported across the tropics and good performance on independent data was retrieved for the most recent pantropical model predicting tree aboveground biomass (AGB) from stem diameter, wood density and total height. General models are undoubtedly useful for the estimation and monitoring of biomass and carbon stock...
Article
Full-text available
The genus Cyrtorchis is renowned for its conspicuous white, long‐spurred flowers, but also for its challenging problems of species delimitation due to the great morphological resemblance of their flowers. Based on a preliminary visual inspection of 1752 specimens, 27 morphogroups were defined including 6 unpublished taxa. Then, we used a representa...
Article
Full-text available
Significance The responses of tropical forests to heat and drought are critical uncertainties in predicting the future impacts of climate change. The 2015–2016 El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) resulted in unprecedented heat and low precipitation across the tropics, including in the very poorly studied African tropical forest region. We assess Af...
Article
Full-text available
Africa is forecasted to experience large and rapid climate change1 and population growth2 during the twenty-first century, which threatens the world’s second largest rainforest. Protecting and sustainably managing these African forests requires an increased understanding of their compositional heterogeneity, the environmental drivers of forest comp...
Article
Background and aims Terrestrial LiDAR scanning (TLS) data are of great interest in forest ecology and management because they provide detailed 3D information on tree structure. Automated pipelines are increasingly used to process TLS data and extract various tree- and plot-level metrics. With these developments comes the risk of unknown reliability...
Preprint
Full-text available
A new species to science of evergreen forest shrub, Kupeantha yabassi (Coffeeae - Rubiaceae), is described, illustrated, mapped, and compared morphologically with the closely similar species K. pentamera. Restricted so far to a single site in evergreen lowland forest near the Ebo Forest, Yabassi, Littoral Region, Cameroon, this species is Criticall...
Article
Ecologists and conservation biologists conducting long-term research programs in the tropics must confront serious ethical challenges that revolve around economic inequalities, cultural differences, supporting the local communities as much as possible, and sharing the knowledge produced by the research. In this collective article, researchers share...
Preprint
Full-text available
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer vegetation continuous fields (MODIS VCF) Earth observation product is widely used to estimate forest cover changes, parameterise vegetation and Earth 30 System models, and as a reference for validation or calibration where field data is limited. However, although limited independent validations of M...
Article
Full-text available
Aim Tree crowns determine light interception, carbon and water exchange. Thus, understanding the factors causing tree crown allometry to vary at the tree and stand level matters greatly for the development of future vegetation modelling and for the calibration of remote sensing products. Nevertheless, we know little about large‐scale variation and...
Article
Full-text available
Aim: Tree crowns determine light interception, carbon and water exchange. Thus, understanding the factors causing tree crown allometry to vary at the tree and stand level matters greatly for the development of future vegetation modelling and for the calibration of remote sensing products. Nevertheless, we know little about large‐scale variation and...
Article
Significance Understanding species’ evolutionary responses to past climate change is fundamental for improved biodiversity conservation. Species in the same area could exhibit either similar or individualistic evolutionary responses. We tested this hypothesis within the highly biodiverse tropical rain forests of Central Africa. We generated an unpa...
Article
Full-text available
The duiker community in Central African rainforests includes a diversity of species that can coexist in the same area. The study of their activity patterns is needed to better understand habitat use or association between the species. Using camera traps, we studied the temporal activity patterns, and quantified for the first time the temporal overl...
Article
Full-text available
In an earlier paper published in Orchids in June 2020, we have shown that the major threats to the orchid habitats in Atlantic Central Africa are shifting agriculture, followed by selective logging and urbanization. Focusing on the methodology we used and explained to assess the risk of extinction of endemic orchids from ACA, we presented habitat t...
Article
To fulfill their growth and reproductive functions, trees develop a three‐dimensional structure that is subject to both internal and external constraints. This is reflected by the unique architecture of each individual at a given time. Addressing the crown dimensions and topological structure of large tropical trees is challenging considering their...
Article
Full-text available
Tropical Africa is home to an astonishing biodiversity occurring in a variety of ecosystems. Past climatic change and geological events have impacted the evolution and diversification of this biodiversity. During the last two decades, around 90 dated molecular phylogenies of different clades across animals and plants have been published leading to...
Article
The world’s second largest expanse of tropical rain forest is in Central Africa and it harbours enormous species diversity. Population genetic studies have consistently revealed significant structure across central African rain forest plants, in particular a North‐South genetic discontinuity around the equatorial line, in a continuous expanse of ra...
Article
Comparing Apples and Pears: The Hidden Diversity of Central African Bush Mangoes (Irvingiaceae). The fruits of Irvingiaceae trees, commonly known as “bush mangoes” or “mangues sauvages,” are crucial foods for Central African human populations, as well as local wildlife. Irvingiaceae oil-rich kernels play an important role in local diet, well-being,...
Article
Full-text available
Forest biomass is key in Earth carbon cycle and climate system, and thus under intense scrutiny in the context of international climate change mitigation initiatives (e.g. REDD+). In tropical forests, the spatial distribution of aboveground biomass (AGB) remains, however, highly uncertain. There is increasing recognition that progress is strongly l...
Article
Full-text available
Background and aims – The genus Tricalysia A.Rich. (Rubiaceae), regarded here in the strict sense (i.e., excluding Empogona Hook.f.), includes 77 species in tropical Africa, Madagascar and the Comoros. In the current paper, three new species from Atlantic Central Africa are described and illustrated; their conservation status is also assessed.Mater...
Article
Full-text available
Comparing Apples and Pears: The Hidden Diversity of Central African Bush Mangoes (Irvingiaceae). The fruits of Irvingiaceae trees, commonly known as “bush mangoes” or “mangues sauvages,” are crucial foods for Central African human populations, as well as local wildlife. Irvingiaceae oil-rich kernels play an important role in local diet, well-being,...
Book
Full-text available
La durabilité de l’aménagement des forêts naturelles d’Afrique centrale est tributaire d’une connaissance approfondie de la dynamique démographique des populations d’arbres commerciaux. Cette dynamique est étudiée dans des dispositifs destinés à être suivis sur le long terme, dénommés parcelles et sentiers. Si la démarche méthodologique d’installat...
Article
Full-text available
Aim Examining tree species‐environment association can offer insight into the drivers of vegetation patterns and key information of practical relevance to forest management. Here, we aim to quantify the contribution of climate and soil gradients to variation in Central African tree species composition (abundance and occurrence). Location Tropical...
Article
Full-text available
African rainforests (ARFs) are species rich and occur in two main rainforest blocks: West/Central and East Africa. This diversity is suggested to be the result of recent diversification, high extinction rates and multiple vicariance events between west/central and East African forests. We reconstructed the diversification history of two subtribes (...
Article
Full-text available
Reducing habitat loss for orchids can be mainly accomplished by (a) the inventory, report and risk of extinction assessment of the most threatened species; (b) the identification of critical habitats and areas that host extraordinarily high diversity and endemicity; and (c) the simultaneous development of integrated in situ and ex situ conservation...
Article
Full-text available
The sensitivity of tropical forest carbon to climate is a key uncertainty in predicting global climate change. Although short-term drying and warming are known to affect forests, it is unknown if such effects translate into long-term responses. Here, we analyze 590 permanent plots measured across the tropics to derive the equilibrium climate contro...
Article
The sensitivity of tropical forest carbon to climate is a key uncertainty in predicting global climate change. Although short-term drying and warming are known to affect forests, it is unknown if such effects translate into long-term responses. Here, we analyze 590 permanent plots measured across the tropics to derive the equilibrium climate contro...
Article
Full-text available
Precise accounting of carbon stocks and fluxes in tropical vegetation using remote sensing approaches remains a challenging exercise, as both signal saturation and ground sampling limitations contribute to inaccurate extrapolations. Airborne LiDAR Scanning (ALS) data can be used as an intermediate level to radically increase sampling and enhance mo...
Article
Full-text available
Palms are conspicuous floristic elements across the tropics. In continental Africa, even though there are less than 70 documented species, they are omnipresent across the tropical landscape. The genus Raphia has 20 accepted species in Africa and one species endemic to the Neotropics. It is the most economically important genus of African palms with...
Article
Full-text available
Competition among trees is an important driver of community structure and dynamics in tropical forests. Neighboring trees may impact an individual tree’s growth rate and probability of mortality, but large‐scale geographic and environmental variation in these competitive effects has yet to be evaluated across the tropical forest biome. We quantifie...
Chapter
The World Orchid Congress has published their fascinating book ‘World Orchid Collections’ detailing about fifty of the world’s most diverse orchid collections with a view to assist ex-situ conservation, pollen sharing etc Initially focused on the orchids of São Tomé, the Tropical Africa and Madagascar orchid shadehouses network currently counts n...
Preprint
Full-text available
Palms are conspicuous floristic elements across the tropics. In continental Africa, even though there are less than 70 documented species, they are omnipresent across the tropical landscape. The genus Raphia has 20 accepted species in Africa and one species endemic to the Neotropics. It is the most economically important genus of African palms with...
Article
Full-text available
Increasing deforestation affects tropical forests, threatening the livelihoods of local populations who subsist on forest resources. The disappearance of wild plants and animals and the increasing influence of market economies affect local health, well-being, and diet. The impact of these changes on wild meat consumption has been well documented, b...
Article
Full-text available
Structurally intact tropical forests sequestered about half of the global terrestrial carbon uptake over the 1990s and early 2000s, removing about 15 per cent of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions. Climate-driven vegetation models typically predict that this tropical forest ‘carbon sink’ will continue for decades. Here we assess trends in the c...
Article
The genus Raphia (Palmae / Arecaceae) contains 22 species and represents a major multiuse resource across tropical Africa and Madagascar. Raphia species provide goods that range from food to construction material and medicine. Its species play a vital cultural role in African societies. Despite its importance, the taxonomy, ecology, and ethnobotany...
Article
Full-text available
Tropical montane forests can store and sequester substantial amounts of carbon in above ground biomass (AGB), but variations in this storage related to location or degradation have not been quantified in the Cameroon Highlands. We established 25 permanent plots (20m x 40m) and sampled all trees ≥ 10 cm diameter following standard RAINFOR protocols....
Article
Full-text available
Wood density (WD) relates to important tree functions such as stem mechanics and resistance against pathogens. This functional trait can exhibit high intraindividual variability both radially and vertically. With the rise of LiDAR-based methodologies allowing nondestructive tree volume estimations, failing to account for WD variations related to tr...
Article
Full-text available
Preserving tropical biodiversity is an urgent challenge when faced with the growing needs of countries. Despite their crucial importance for terrestrial ecosystems, most tropical plant species lack extinction risk assessments, limiting our ability to identify conservation priorities. Using a novel approach aligned with IUCN Red List criteria, we co...
Article
Full-text available
Determining where species diversify (cradles) and persist (museums) over evolutionary time is fundamental to understanding the distribution of biodiversity and for conservation prioritization. Here, we identify cradles and museums of angiosperm generic diversity across tropical Africa, one of the most biodiverse regions on Earth. Regions containing...