Laurent G Houessou

Laurent G Houessou
University of Parakou | UP · School of Wildlife and Protected Areas Management (ENSAGAP-Kandi)

PhD

About

34
Publications
22,912
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305
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 2002 - October 2014
University of Abomey-Calavi
Position
  • Senior Researcher at the Laboratory of Applied Ecology, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences

Publications

Publications (34)
Article
La création des réserves de biosphère constitue une des stratégies adoptées pour assurer la conservation de la biodiversité. Malgré cette disposition, l'efficacité des réserves de biosphère pour garantir la conservation de la biodiversité demeure encore un sujet de discussion scientifique. Cette étude visait à analyser l'efficacité de la réserve de...
Poster
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Les forêts hébergent plus de 80% de la biodiversité terrestre. Ainsi la protection de la biodiversité passe inéluctablement par la préservation de ces écosystèmes forestiers. Cependant, le constat général révèle que ces forêts subissent d’énormes pressions anthropiques qui impactent négativement sur la diversité biologique qu’elles renferment. Cett...
Article
Human disturbance on vegetation is an important concern in biodiversity conservation. In this study we assessed how anthropogenic disturbance affected plant communities pattern, diversity, life form and chorotype composition along a land use gradient. Vegetation relevés were performed along a land use gradient (park-buffer zone-communal land) at W...
Article
An ethnobotanical study was conducted with the main socio-cultural groups on woody plants in the riparian lands of the Mono Biosphere Reserve in Benin which is newly created and recognized by the Unesco in 2017. This study aims to determine the wood species with high ethnobotanical value in order to provide to the managers, the plant species which...
Article
Full-text available
La question de sauvegarde des ressources biologiques en l'occurrence celles végétales et la nécessité de satisfaire les besoins en produits vivriers d'une population en pleine croissance a imposé à l'humanité la pratique d'arrangement spatio-temporel des cultures annuelles et des ligneux pérennes. L'objectif de l'étude était de faire la typologie d...
Article
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Mangrove ecosystems constitute valuable resource all over the world. They provide habitats for flora and fauna species, protect the coast against erosion and supply various products for local communities. Currently, mangroves are overused and degraded. Up to now, perceptions of local communities on the dynamic of mangrove forest and their acceptabl...
Article
Full-text available
ABSTRACT This paper presents the experiences of W-Arly-Pendjari (WAP) parks in West Africa to improve conservation strategies with the support of partners within a transboundary management system. The W Regional Park and WAP complex conservation, funded respectively by the European Union and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) projects since 2001...
Article
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La demande croissante de viande de brousse en Afrique menace d’extinction de nombreuses espèces animales. Certaines sont en situation précaire, tel le porc-épic à crête (Hystrix cristata). Menacé d’extinction, il reste chassé dans plusieurs pays africains pour sa viande, très prisée par les populations locales, mais aussi ses poils modifiés en piqu...
Article
Hippopotamus amphibius is the 3rd largest and heaviest terrestrial mammal after elephants (Loxodonta africana) and white rhinos (Ceratotherium simum) in Africa. This investigation conducted in the Benin Republic aims to assess the local inhabitants' traditional knowledge associated with hippo in different use categories (medicinal, cultural and spi...
Article
Lannea microcarpa, an Anacardiaceae species associated to croplands in West Africa is a multipurpose tree used in traditional medicine, human and animal feeding in Sudanian zone of Bénin. This study aimed at evaluating its fruits and pulp yield. Fruit and pulp production and dendrometric variables were collected on 21 and 27 trees respectively in d...
Article
Full-text available
In order to obtain regular data on the wildlife diversity, abundance and density in the Pendjari Biosphere Reserve in Benin for better wildlife monitoring, a complete wildlife census was undertaken. Fieldwork was carried out in April 2013 using line transect method. Wildlife were censused along a total of 317 transects of about 1444.6 km in the res...
Article
Full-text available
Hippopotamus is the second biggest mammal after elephant in the protected areas of Benin. Its populations in these special areas dedicated to biodiversity conservation are seldom known and promoted. In order to fill the gap of knowledge on the importance of Hippopotamus and its organs and produits, we undetook an ethnozoological survey among 81 peo...
Article
Full-text available
La compréhension de l'influence de l'anthropisation, sur la variation de la diversité des espèces revêt une importance grandissante pour la conservation de la biodiversité de nos jours. L'objectif de cette étude est de déterminer à quel point le degré d'anthropisation peut influencer la structure et la diversité des communautés d'oiseaux des forêts...
Article
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Plant species are basic component of agro-biodiversity and a complex situation created by their own ability to disperse; and the rapid changes of land use and climate is endangering their efficient conservation and use. In order to increase knowledge of bitter and sweet African bush mango trees (ABMTs) (Irvingia spp.: Irvingiaceae) and support smal...
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents the experiences of W-Arly-Pendjari (WAP) parks in West Africa to improve conservation strategies with the support of partners within a transboundary management system. The W Regional Park and WAP complex conservation, funded respectively by the European Union and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) projects since 2001, has all...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to assess the local communities’ perception of climate variation effects on crop production and the adopted strategies by farmers in order to cope with the negative effects of climate on the agriculture in the coastal zone of Benin. Design/methodology/approach – A total of 290 agricultural households were samp...
Article
Full-text available
Biosphere Reserves stand as the worldwide strategy of biological conservation. However, the current global land use change involves extensive loss of vegetation cover around the reserves and increase their vulnerability and their ecological isolation. The overall objective of this study was to assess the trends of land covers change in and outside...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Malaria remains one of the most important illnesses in sub-Saharan Africa. In Benin, it constitutes a major public health preoccupation particularly for children and pregnant women. Until now, population still mostly relies on herbal medicine for malaria healing. Hence this study was carried out to document the medicinal plants used in...
Article
Full-text available
Background In addition to plant species biology and ecology, understanding the folk knowledge systems related to the use of plant species and how this knowledge system influences the conservation of plant species is an important issue in the implementation of sustainable strategies of biodiversity conservation programs. This study aimed at providin...
Article
Full-text available
In semi-arid region managers are facing rapid degradation of grassland. There is a need to determine indicators to be used to detect early change occurring in the grassland for their sustainable management. Thereof, in this study, we explored the reliability of the use of hemicryptophytes as indicator of grassland state in semi-arid region within W...
Article
Full-text available
In semi-arid region managers are facing rapid degradation of grassland. There is a need to determine indicators to be used to detect early change occurring in the grassland for their sustainable management. Thereof, in this study, we explored the reliability of the use of hemicryptophytes as indicator of grassland state in semi-arid region within W...
Article
Full-text available
RÉSUMÉ Objectif : Le présent travail se veut être une étude de base pour l’aménagement durable d’un écosystème humide négligé au sud du Bénin : la forêt marécageuse d’Agonvé et ses écosystèmes connexes. Il vise à identifier les différents groupements végétaux de la forêt, à connaitre leur diversité floristique et la structure diamétrique de leurs p...
Article
Full-text available
Quantitative ethnobotanical study was conducted with the local community around Agonve forest, which is one of southern Benin swampy forest. This study enables to describe the different use categories of woody plant species for local population and to determine the use value (UV) of each species. A total of 28 woody species were identified as usefu...

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Projects

Project (1)
Archived project
Sustainable Use of Natural Vegetation in West Africa RESULTS IN BRIEF SUN, gathered local and international expertise to create a framework for vegetation management in west Africa. Improved interaction between scientists and stakeholders promises to prevent further deterioration of valuable ecosystems. Anne Mette Lykke The natural vegetation of semi-arid west Africa is of immense importance to local ecosystems as well as the livelihood of the local population. Unfortunately, poor management and unsustainable use is bringing about rapid deterioration of the vegetation. To reverse this worrying trend of destruction of a crucially important resource, a major EU-funded project was set up involving institutions from across Europe and west Africa. The 'Tools for management and sustainable use of natural vegetation in West Africa' (SUN) project aimed to bridge the gap between global initiatives, scientific information and the realities of life in Africa where practical solutions are required. SUN aimed to develop new management tools and solid management strategy to improve sustainable use of natural vegetation. The scientists combined vegetation dynamics and causal factors as well as economic instruments and policies to come up with a recipe for sustainable economic growth. To study human impact on phytodiversity, models were constructed using data from maps of vegetation from land use and protected areas. Overall, the scientists worked to understand vegetation dynamics and the factors that bring this about to identify and protect vulnerable areas and habitats. The scientists derived maps that show the changes in vegetation from 1982 to 2008 from indices subject to evaluation. Growing season peak time, greenness, length of season and shape of the phenological profile were used to correlate plant changes with rainfall and temperature patterns. A comprehensive database at http://www.westafricanvegetation.org/ houses the phytosociological and tree (dendrometric) data as well as lists of flora. Adapted to offline and therefore field use where the Internet may be slow, the vegetation data network allows upload of data sets for registered users. For users, the SUN map server facilitates the use of spatial information in SUN areas in west Africa to input into geographic information systems (GIS) for further processing. The SUN countries folder contains a vast range of data – from cities and villages to vegetation, geology and soils, as well as administrative boundaries. SUN has developed a major information platform for sustainable vegetation management in west Africa. The achievements of the SUN project will be fortified by data input from other projects. One key example is that the SUN map server will be updated regularly with data collected from the follow-on Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) initiative 'Understanding and combating desertification to mitigate its impact on ecosystem services' (Undesert). MORE DETAILED RESULTS Workpackage 1. Maps of vegetation patterns and land use units have been prepared for the project core areas. Extensive vegetation inventories from land use areas and protected areas have been conducted and data are stored in a vegetation database (WP4) and used for modelling of phytodiversity patterns in relation to human impact. Population dynamics of several highly valued species show declining tendencies in land use areas compared to protected areas. An improved understanding of vegetation dynamics and their causal factors will be used to identify and protect vulnerable areas and habitats (WP5). Workpackage 2. Five indices that measure changes in phenology have been developed and evaluated to verify that these indices measure; 1) Changes in the peakedness of the growing season, 2) Changes in the average annual greenness, 3) Shifts in the time of the peak of the season, 4) Changes in the length of the season and 5) Changes in the shape of the phenological profile. These indices have been used to derive maps depicting the changes in phenology that have taken place over the period of the time series used (1982 – 2008) and to analyse the correlations between these changes and changes in the key climate parameters of precipitation and temperature. Changes in vegetation phenology are significantly correlated with changes in rainfall over much of Africa and, occasionally, with changes in temperature. Workpackage 3. Local preferences and needs in relation to vegetation use have been identified and analysed within all the core areas. Economic instruments, such as subsidies, taxation, quotas or property right institutions, have been identified and analysed according to political feasibility as tools for improved management. Cultural and socio-economic impediments to sustainable use of the vegetation are also identified and ways to redress them are explored. Workpackage 4. An online vegetation database has been developed, which allows entry of all major plot types and maximises user acceptance by a flexible access rights approach. The online database concept has the advantage of common standards, facilitated exchange, good visibility of available data and high data security. The synchronization feature with local databases makes it possible to use our database directly in the field and under slow internet conditions. the database has a digitization record of 360028 single observations and 10743 plots. Workpackage 5. Indicators of sustainable use were analysed and identified at different scales (landscape, habitat, species). For identification of vulnerable habitats and species, the Climate Change Severity Index was derived, and the population pressure on the core areas was assessed. Vegetation data were prepared for comparison of land use and protected areas, and data on highly valued species in relation to the nearest settlements were used to identify the use impact on the species. A list of indicator species is in preparation. Workpackage 6. Biophysic data (vegetation, species, landcover/landuse, ecoregions, soils, geology, climate, rivers, watersheds, slope, elevation, satellite images) and socioeconomic data (population density, villages, administrative boundaries, languages, ethnies, borders, protected sites) for the core areas in West-Africa have been gathered, compiled and processed and are available in six File Geodatabases (ESRI ArcGIS). The Map Server has been updated to GeoMoose 2.0. Workpackage 7. A participatory management plan is being prepared for each core area on the basis of vegetation, satellite and socio-economic data. Management of natural resources is being improved by increasing local populations’ awareness of new possibilities for sustainable use of forest resources and by integrating local knowledge in the management plans. The management plans are being prepared in close collaboration between researchers and local communities. Workpackage 8. Restoration activities are carried out in different ecological sites of Benin, Burkina Faso and Niger. A total of 10 ha were reforested using low-cost budget (traditional) techniques and deep ploughing. In total, 2500 saplings of value species were planted. In the Sahelian conditions, Acacia senegal and Faidherbia albida are the best species, and in the Sudanian zones, Combretum micranthum, Jatropha curcas, Bauhinia rufescens and Faidherbia albida are able to grow on degraded soils. The best low-budget techniques are half-moon, zaï and stone walls. More expensive techniques like deep ploughing present more effect on soil restoration and biodiversity conservation. Workpackage 9. Dissemination is an important part of all research activities, and all 20 Ph. D. students will focus on disseminating research results. The dissemination is carried out on various levels: information to international institutions, local governments, natural resource management organisations, NGOs and local communities. The scientific results are published in international journals and in brochures in a simplified form. Presently, 29 scientific publications are published in international reviews and more are on the way. PARTNERS Aarhus University, Denmark (coordinator) Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences, Denmark University of Cheikh Anta Diop of Dakar, Senegal Johan Wolfgang Goethe University, Germany Senckenberg Research Institute, Germany University of Ouagadougou, Burkina FASO University of Bobo Dioulasso, Burkina Faso University of Abomey-Calavi of Cotonou, Benin University of Abdou Moumouni of Niamey, Niger FUNDING EU-FP6 INCO-dev PROJECT PAGE https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/81309_en.html