Unsustainable fuel wood utilisation and poorly articulated habitat reforestation strategy could pose serious threats to the survival of animal species. However, few areas have provided the opportunity to compare the twin effects of these factors on local biodiversity which may be useful for shaping conservation strategies at local levels. Thus, this study examined utilization patterns of plant species used for fuelwood in five Local Government Areas of Plateau State, Nigeria and the extent of avian and insect diversity that they support in natural habitats in comparison to the exotic Eucalyptus camaldulensis used in the reforestation of mined areas in the state. Pattern of fuel wood utilisation was obtained through direct survey of fuel wood markets. Biodiversity survey was also carried out to determine avian and insect visit rates, species richness and diversity on the three most utilised plant species (Parkia biglobosa, Syzygium guineense and Terminalia macroptera) and the exotic E. camaldulensis. Fuel wood utilisation appeared to involve a wide range of plant species. Most utilised plant species also supported higher local biodiversity as compared to the exotic E. camaldulensis suggesting that future reforestation in the area could achieve a wider ecological significance if some native plant species are considered.
Keywords: Fuel wood, reforestation, biodiversity, birds, insects.
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