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Bird Diversity and Community Composition in Kafta Sheraro National Park, Tigray, Northern Ethiopia

Bird Diversity and Community Composition in Kafta Sheraro National Park, Tigray, Northern Ethiopia Hindawi International Journal of Zoology Volume 2020, Article ID 5016804, 10 pages https://doi.org/10.1155/2020/5016804 Research Article Bird Diversity and Community Composition in Kafta Sheraro National Park, Tigray, Northern Ethiopia Teklay Girmay , Zeyede Teshome, and Tesfay Tesfamichael Department of Biology, Adigrat University, P. O. Box 50, Adigrat, Ethiopia Correspondence should be addressed to Teklay Girmay; tekigir9@gmail.com Received 1 October 2019; Revised 19 December 2019; Accepted 27 January 2020; Published 20 February 2020 Academic Editor: Hynek Burda Copyright © 2020 Teklay Girmay et al. *is is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Birds are one of the most important components of biodiversity that has huge ecological, economical, and esthetic values. *e main objective of this study was to assess diversity and species composition of bird community in Kafta Sheraro National Park, Northern Ethiopia. Data were collected from August 2017 to March 2018 in the national park. Point count method was employed to collect data on bird species diversity and species composition. Direct observations of birds and discussion with local people and scouts to assess potential threats of avifauna in the park were made. Shannon diversity index was used to calculate the species diversity. A total of 158 bird species belonging to 52 different families and 20 orders were identified. Of the recorded species, there were 76.6% residents, 15.8% Palaearctic migrants (PM), 5.7% Intra-African migrants (IM), and 1.9% partial migrants. Acci- pitiridae (11.4%) had the highest species followed by Columbidae, Estrilidae, and Ploceidae with 7%, 5.7%, and 4.4% species, respectively. *e highest Shannon–Weiner diversity index (H′ � 4.50) was recorded during February while the lowest (H′ � 2.18) was recorded during March. Species richness of the park showed no significance difference among the study months (χ �10.046, df � 5, P> 0.05). Agricultural expansions, fire, livestock grazing, mining, and poaching were the major threats of the park bird species. Kafta Sheraro National Park is one of the areas with high avian composition in Ethiopia. In the park, wildlife watching in general and ornithological tourism in particular should be developed. Anthropogenic disturbances should also be minimized to conserve avian diversity of the park. birds help in dispersal of seeds. Some birds help in pro- 1. Background duction of nectars and used as source of food in different Ethiopia possesses many designated protected areas in- parts of the world. *ey also serve as indicators of envi- cluding national parks, sanctuaries, priority forests, and ronmental conditions [4, 5]. biosphere reserves. High numbers of biodiversity are found Wildlife tourism is one of the key economic activities for within these conservation areas [1]. Ethiopia is endowed countries that have rich biodiversity and high endemism [6]. with great diversity of flora, fauna, and microbial genetic Economic value of wildlife watching tourism is particularly resources. *e country is one of biodiversity-rich countries important. Accordingly, wildlife watching in general and in the world. According to Lepage [2], Ethiopia is known to bird watching in particular are the most practiced type of the be home for 864 species of birds with 19 endemism. In people’s income in many African countries [7]. Bird addition, the number of mammals, reptile, fish, amphibian, watching is becoming a new area of tourism. It is currently and arthropod species identified so far is 284, 201, 200, 63, developing and generating significant economic benefit in and 1,225, respectively. Of these faunal resources, 29 wild different countries [8]. Countries which are benefiting from mammals, 10 reptiles, 40 fishes, 25 amphibians, and 7 ar- bird watching are those who have documented the necessary thropod species are endemic to the country [3]. Birds are one information on their ornithological studies. Ornithological of the most important components of biodiversity with huge knowledge helps to know the locations or distributions of ecological, economical, and esthetic values. Fruit-eating the birds, their diversity, and to analyze the impact of direct 2 International Journal of Zoology and indirect effects of tourism on biodiversity [9]. However, demoiselle crane are of the few most attractive bird species of no study has assessed the diversity and species composition the park [11]. of the avifauna of Kafta Sheraro National Park. As a result, only few international tourists are visiting it unlike the other 2.2. Data Collection. Before collecting the actual data, pilot Ethiopian National Parks although the national park con- survey was conducted in the study area in order to have tains great biodiversity including birds. *erefore, it is ex- baseline information on the ecology, threats, and bird pected that this project will help to develop bird-watching species of the national park and to decide on the survey tourism of the park. design and sampling strategy. Kafta Sheraro National Park (KSNP) is a newly estab- Data collection was carried out from August 2017 to lished park in Tigray province, Ethiopia. Accordingly, it has March 2018. Field survey was conducted to study the avian little ecological information. Preliminary wildlife assessment species composition and diversity. A stratified random of the park showed that the park is rich in faunal diversity. sampling technique based on the habitat type was used for For instance, caracal (Felis caracal), leopard (Panthera selecting the actual sites for sampling using point count [12]. pardus), greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros), oribi *e sampling unit within the habitat was determined and (Ourebia ourebi), waterbuck (Kobus ellipsiprymnus), aard- assigned on the basis of the area coverage and vegetation vark (Orycteropus afer), roan antelope (Hippotragus equi- type. Bird species were observed using naked eyes and field nus), and the African elephant (Loxodonta africana) are binoculars for better identification [13]. GPS was used to some of the larger mammals known in this area [10]. It is also locate the points for the bird-counting methods. Birds were believed that the park contains different unidentified aquatic surveyed using point count technique which is a systematic and terrestrial bird species [11]. Information about avian search over a fixed area and/or for a fixed time (5 minutes). diversity and abundance is very important for attracting *is allows the observer to record all the bird species around. local and international tourists and for conservation of the Point counts (point transects) are an efficient and inex- species. However, no study has been conducted to investi- pensive survey method for determining avian species gate the diversity and relative abundance of avian species of composition and abundance [14]. A total of sixty point count Kafta Sheraro National Park (KSNP). *us, this study aims stations with 30 m fixed radius apart were established sys- to investigate the diversity and species composition of avian tematically. Observations were made by standing in a series diversity in the national park. of point count stations and observing 360 round and gently up to 30 m radius distance. *e point count stations were 2. Materials and Methods 300 m apart to avoid error of double counting [15]. To minimize disturbance during count, a waiting period of 3 to 2.1. Description of the Study Area. Kafta Sheraro National 5 minutes prior to counting was applied. Bird species were Park (KSNP), which was recognized as a park in 2007 identified and enumerated twice a day that is in the early (Letter, No: 13/37/82/611), is situated in the northwest of morning (8:30–11:30 hr) and in the late afternoon (9:30–11: ° ° ° ° Ethiopia between 14 3′ and 14 27′N and 36 41′ and 37 40′E. 30 hr) where bird activity was maximum and on days with It is located in West and North West zones of the Regional good weather conditions [16]. Surveys were conducted on State of Tigray, Ethiopia. It is found between Kafta Humera, foot. Tahtay Adiyabo, and Welkayit woredas. *e national park is Photographs and videos were captured to count too bordered by Eritrea in the north, and it is presumed to have many birds that were difficult to identify during the field. an estimated total area of 2176.43 km (Figure 1). It is the Bird calls were recorded whenever possible using a tape only national park in Tigray Regional State, and it is about recorder. Colored field guides such as [17–19] were used for 1015 km away from Addis Ababa. Its altitude ranges from identification and categorization of birds to their respective 550 to 1800 masl. *e agroclimatic zone is identified as Qolla taxonomic groups. *e experiences of park experts were also with an inclination to semiarid. Vegetation communities used in the identification of birds based on different mor- within the park include Acacia-Commiphora, Combretum- phological features such as plumage pattern, size, shapes, Terminalia, dry evergreen montane woodlands, and riparian colour, songs, and calls. Observed species were identified types. *e site has a monomodal pattern of rain with high and recorded on the data sheet prepared for that purpose. peaks in May and early September with a mean annual Observation and discussion with nearby villagers and scouts rainfall of about 400–650 mm. *e park is home to many were made to assess potential threats of the avifauna in the ungulates, predators, and other wild animal species. *e park. *e current human activities including livestock in- presence of some mega wild animals such as the African cursion, habitat exploitation, and wildlife utilization were elephant, roan antelope, and the cranes (which use the area closely examined along with the field survey. as a wintering site), and other migratory birds make the park, and its environs a significant site for national and 2.2.1. Data Analysis. *e species diversity of the area was international tourists. Other mammals such as greater kudus and bohor reedbucks are relatively common. *e avifauna of analyzed using Shannon diversity index [20] as follows: the park is rather immense. As a result, the park is registered as one of the 73 important bird areas in Ethiopia. *e ′ H � − 􏽘 (Pi)∗ (ln Pi) , (1) { } brown-headed parrot, Parakeet, little green bee-eater, and i�1 International Journal of Zoology 3 Figure 1: Map showing the location of Kafta Sheraro National Park. where H′ � the Shannon diversity index; P � fraction of the (PM), Intra-African migrants (IM), and partial migrants, entire population made up of species I; S � numbers of respectively. *e remaining 121 (76.6%) bird species were species encountered; 􏽐 � sum from species 1 to species S; residents. KSNP is a home to many attractive avian species. and ln � natural logarithm. A few of them are put in Figure 2. Species richness (S) was calculated by S � 􏽘 n, (2) 3.2. Species Diversity, Species Richness, and Species Evenness. *e Shannon–Weiner diversity index indicated that the where n is the number of species in a community. highest diversity of birds (H′ � 4.50) was recorded during Species evenness, which measures the pattern of dis- February, and the lowest diversity (H′ � 2.18) was recorded tribution of the bird populations present in the area, was during March. Similarly, the highest even distribution of evaluated using Shannon–Wiener evenness index (E) as birds was observed during February (E � 0.98), but the follows [21]: lowest was during March (E � 0.46). *e majority of species was recorded during January with 131 (83%) species fol- E � , (3) lowed by March 108 (68%) and October 92 (58%) (Table 2). max Species richness of the park showed no significant difference where E � Shannon–Wiener evenness index; H′ � Shannon– between the study months (χ �10.046, df � 5, P> 0.05). *e Wiener diversity index; and H � lnS � natural logarithm of max wet season diversity index (H′ � 4.6) was higher than that of the total number of species (S). the dry season (H′ � 3.2). Evenness index was also higher Data collected during the study period were analyzed during the wet season (E � 0.94) than the dry season using SPSS software package version 20. Chi-square test was (E � 0.64) (Figure 3). used to test difference of species richness among the study months. Moreover, the collected data were analyzed and 4. Discussion interpreted through tabulation and percentage. *e result of the current study showed that Kafta Sheraro National Park harbored high diversity (H′ � 2.18 up to 4.50) 3. Results and species composition (158 species) because of the ideal 3.1. Species Composition. A total of 158 bird species be- habitat condition of the study area for avifauna. *is could longing to 52 different families and 20 orders were identified be due to various vegetation types and weather conditions of during the surveys. Of the identified bird species, family the park and location of the Tekeze River along the park. *is Accipitiridae 18 (11.4%) had the highest species followed by may provide foraging, breeding, nesting, and other survival Columbidae, Estrilidae, and Ploceidae with 11 (7%), 9 opportunities for both aquatic and terrestrial bird species. (5.7%), and 7 (4.4%) number of species, respectively. *e Moreover, the highest diversity and species composition of lowest number of species was recorded from families avifauna in the park might be due to the situation in which Anatidae, Apodidae, Bucorvidae, Burhinidae, Phoeniculi- both aquatic and terrestrial bird species inhabit because dae, Upupidae, Pluvianidae, Numididae, Phasianidae, Tekeze River bounds all parts of the park. *is situation may Leiothrichidae, Monarchidae, Prionopidae, Pycnonotidae, create the park to have high number of aquatic bird species Scopidae, Indicatoridae, Picidae, Strigidae, and Tytonidae in addition to terrestrial bird species. *is study showed that with one species each (Table 1). Among the recorded species, species composition of Kafta Sheraro National Park is 25 (15.8%), 9 (5.7%), and 3 (1.9%) were Palaearctic migrants highest as compared with other similar studies conducted in 4 International Journal of Zoology Table 1: List of bird species recorded in Kafta Sheraro National Park. Order Family Common name Scientific name IUCN status Accipitroformes Accipitiridae Brown snake eagle Circaetus cinereus LC African fish eagle Haliaeetus vocifer LC Long-crested eagle Laphaetus occipitalis LC Gabar goshawk Micronisus gabar LC Black kite Milvus migrans LC Black-shouldered kite Elanus caeruleus LC Lappet-faced vulture Torgos tracheliotos EN Hooded vulture Necrosyrtes monachus CR African white-backed vulture Gyps africanus CR Long-legged buzzard Buteo rufinus LC Dark chanting goshawk Melierax metabates LC Long-crested eagle Lophaetus occipitalis LC Tawny eagle Aquila rapax VU Bateleur Terathopius ecaudatus NT Steppe eagle Aquila nipalensis EN Common buzzard Buteo buteo LC African cuckoo hawk Aviceda cuculoides LC African harrier hawk Polyboroidees typus LC Anseriformes Anatidae Egyptian goose Alopochen aegyptiaca LC Apodiformes Apodidae Africa palm swift Cypsiurus parvus LC Bucerotiformes Bucerotidae African grey hornbill Lophoceros nasutus LC Northern red-billed hornbill Tockus erythrorhynchus LC Hemprich’s hornbill Lophoceros hemprichii LC Bucorvidae Abyssinian ground hornbill Bucorvus abyssinicus VU Phoeniculidae Black-billied wood hoopoe Phoeniculus somaliensis LC Upupidae Eurasian hoopoe Upupa epops LC Caprimulgiformes Caprimulgidae Egyptian nightjar Caprimulgus aegyptius LC Long-tailed nightjar Caprimulgus climacurus LC Charadriiformes Burhinidae Senegal thick-knee Burhinus senegalensis LC Charadriidae *ree-banded plover Charadrius tricollaris LC Spur winged lapwing Vanellus spinosus LC Little-ringed plover Charadrius dubius LC Black-headed plover Vanellus tectus LC Pluvianidae Egyptian plover Pluvianus aegyptius LC Scolopacidae Common sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos LC Wood sandpiper Tringa glareola LC Common greenshank Tringa nebularia LC Ciconiiformes Ciconiidae Abdim’s stork Ciconia abdimii LC Woolly-necked stork Ciconia episcopus VU Yellow-billed stork Mycteria ibis LC White stork Ciconia ciconia LC Coliiformes Coliidae Speckled mousebird Colius stariatus LC Blue-naped mousebird Urocolius macrourus LC Columbiformes Columbidae Laughing dove Stigmatopelia senegalensis LC Ring naked dove Streptopelia capicola LC Vinaceous dove Streptopelia vinacea LC Black-billed wood-dove Turtur abyssinicus LC Red-eyed dove Streptopelia semitorquata LC Namaqua dove Oena capensis LC African mourning dove Streptopelia decipiens LC African collared-dove Streptopelia roseogrisea LC Emerald-spotted wood dove Turtur chalcospilos LC Bruce’s green pigeon Treron waalia LC Speckled pigeon Columba guinea LC Coraciiformes Alcedinidae Giant kingfisher Megaceryle maxima LC Pied kingfisher Ceryle rudis LC Pygmy kingfisher Ispidina picta LC Mangrove kingfisher Halcyon senegaloides LC Malachite kingfisher Corythornis cristatus LC Coraciidae Abyssinian roller Coracias abyssinicus LC Purple roller Coracias naevius LC International Journal of Zoology 5 Table 1: Continued. Order Family Common name Scientific name IUCN status Meropidae Blue-breasted Bee-eater Merops variegates LC Blue cheeked bee-eater Merops persicus LC Little bee-eater Merops pusillus LC White-throated bee-eater Merops albicollis LC Little green bee-eater Merops orientalis LC Northern carmine bee-eater Merops nubicus LC Cuculiformes Cuculidae White-browed coucal Centropus superciliosus LC Blue-headed coucal Centropus monachus LC Falconiformes Falconidae Common kestrel Falco tinnunculus LC Grey kestrel Falco ardosiaceus LC Peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus LC Gruiformes Gruidae Common crane Grus grus LC Demoiselle crane Anthropoides virgo LC Galliformes Numididae Helmeted guineafowl Numida meleagris LC Phasianidae Clapperton’s francolin Pternistis clappertoni LC Passeriformes Acrocephalidae African yellow warbler Iduna natalensis LC Eastern olivaceous warbler Iduna pallida LC Alaudidae *ekla lark Galerida theklae LC Rufous rumped lark Pinarocorys erythropygia LC Black crowned sparrow lark Eremopterix nigriceps LC Buphagidae Red-billed oxpecker Buphagus erythrorhynchus LC Yellow-billed oxpecker Buphagus africanus LC Emberizidae Cinnamon breasted bunting Emberiza tahapisi LC Golden breasted bunting Emberiza flaviventris LC Estrildidae Red-billed firefinch Lagonosticta senegala LC Red-cheeked cordonbleu Uraeginthus bengalus LC Southern cordonbleu Uraeginthus angolensis LC Yellow-billed waxbill Coccopygia quartinia LC Fawn-breasted waxbill Estrilda paludicola LC Common waxbill Estrilda astrild LC Bronze mannikin Lonchura cucullata LC African silver bill Eudica cantans LC Black-rumped waxbill Estrildida troglodytes LC Hirundinidae Ethiopian swallow Hirundo aethiopica LC Wire-tailed swallow Hirundi smithii LC Laniidae Lesser grey shrike Lanius minor LC Red-backed shrike Lanius collurio LC Woodchat shrike Lanius senator LC Masked shrike Lanius nubicus LC Leiothrichidae White-headed babbler Turdoides leucocephala LC Malaconotidae Black-headed gonolek Laniarius erythrogaster LC Northern puffback Dryoscopus gambensis LC Ethiopian boubou Laniarius aethiopicus LC Monarchidae African paradise flycatcher Terpsiphone viridis LC Motacillidae Western yellow wagtail Motacilla flava LC White wagtail Motacilla alba LC African pied wagtail Motacilla aguimp LC Muscicapidae Common rock thrush Monticola saxatilis LC Black scrub robin Cercotrichas podobe LC Northern wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe LC Pied wheatear Oenanthe pleschanka LC Mocking cliff chat 9amnolaea cinamomeiventris LC Nectariniidae Scarlet-chested sunbird Chalcomaitra senegalensis LC Mariqua sunbird Cinnyris mariquiensis LC Malachite sunbird Nectarinia famosa LC Shining sunbird Cinnyris habessinicus LC Black-billed sunbird Cinnyris nectarinioides LC Passeridae Northern grey-headed sparrow Passer griseus LC Shelley’s rufous sparrow Passer shelleyi LC Ploceidae Black-headed weaver Ploceus melanocephalus LC Northern-red bishop Euplectes nigroventris LC 6 International Journal of Zoology Table 1: Continued. Order Family Common name Scientific name IUCN status Little weaver Ploceus luteolus LC Speckle-fronted weaver Sporopipes frontalis LC White-billed buffalo weaver Bubalornis albirostris LC Village weaver Ploceus cucullatus LC Red-headed quelea Quelea erythrops LC Prionopidae White-crested helmet shrike Prionops plumatus LC Pycnonotidae Common bulbul Pycnonotus barbatus LC Sturnidae Ruppell’s long-tailed starling Lamprotornis purpuroptera LC Stuhlmann’s starling Poeoptera stuhlmanni LC Greater blue-eared starling Lamprotornis chalybaeus LC Lesser blue-eared starling Lamprotornis chloropterus LC Red-winged starling Onychognatus morio LC Chestnut-bellied starling Lamprotornis pulcher LC Viduidae Village indigobird Vidua chalybeate LC Sahel paradise whydah Vidua orientalis LC Eastern paradise whydah Vidua paradisaea LC Pin-tailed whydah Vidua macroura LC Pelecaniformes Ardeidae Grey heron Ardea cinerea LC Cattle egret Bubulcus ibis LC Little egret Egretta garzetta LC Black-headed heron Ardea melanocephala LC *rekiornithidae Glossy ibis Plegadis falcinellus LC Sacred ibis 9reskiornis aethiopicus LC African spoonbill Platalea alba LC Scopidae Hamerkop Scopus umbretta LC Piciformes Indicatoridae Greater honeyguide Indicator indicator LC Picidae Nubian woodpecker Campethera nubica LC Lybiidae Black-billed barbet Lybius guifsobalito LC Yellow-breasted barbet Trachyphonus margaritatus LC Psittaciformes Psittacidae Rose-ringed parakeet Psittacula krameri LC Meyer’s parrot Poicephalus meyeri LC Pterocliformes Pteroclidae Lichtenstein’s sandgrouse Pterocles lichtensteinii LC Four-banded sandgrouse Pterocles quadricinctus LC Chestnut-bellied sandgrouse Pterocles exustus LC Strigiformes Strigidae African scopes owl Otus senegalensis LC Tytonidae Barn owl Tyto alba LC Note. ♠ � Palaearctic migrant, ∗ � Intra-African migrant, ♥ � partial migrant, unmarked species are resident birds, LC � least concern, NT �near threatened, VU � vulnerable, EN � endangered, and CR � critically endangered. other parts of Ethiopia [22–25]. Changes in vegetation effect of migratory bird species. *e availability of resources, composition and structure of habitat complexity and suit- especially plenty food supply, may increase the diversity of ability, a change over the time, affect bird species compo- avian species at a given area [24]. *e highest and lowest sition [26]. Kafta Sheraro National Park is a home for 15.8%, number of species (S) was recorded during January and 5.7%, and 1.9% Palaearctic migrants (PM), Intra-African October with 83% and 68% species, respectively. *e high migrants (IM), and partial migrants, respectively. *is number of bird richness in January may be due to the revealed that the park is very important for migratory bird migratory birds which migrate to the park from different species in addition to sedentary birds. directions of the globe. Bird species are migrating to Kafta Sheraro National Park for feeding during the winter. *e Higher diversity of index was recorded during February (H′ � 4.50) followed by January (H′ � 4.15) and August researchers observed that there were migratory birds that arrive in the park starting from January and leave at the end (H′ � 4.05) while the lowest diversity index was recorded during March and October with (H′ � 2.18 and H′ � 3.47), of April. *e lowest number of bird species during October respectively. *is showed that both species richness and might be due to temporary migration of bird species from evenness were high during February, January, and August. the park to the nearest agricultural fields that provide al- In ecological studies, the Shannon–Weiner diversity index is ternative temporary seasonal foraging and nesting oppor- greater than 4 as both the richness and the evenness of the tunities to the birds. *is could decrease their abundance in community have increased [27]. *e difference in avian their natural habitat [15]. *e diversity index result showed diversity among the study months might be associated with that the species diversity during the wet season was higher the availability of the food source among the months and the than the dry season. *is might be due to the presence of International Journal of Zoology 7 (a) (b) (c) (d) (e) (f) Figure 2: Few attractive bird species located in KSNP. (a) Pluvianus aegyptius. (b) Pterocles lichtensteinii. (c) Burhinus senegalensis. (d) Micronisus gabar. (e) Bubulcus ibis. (f) Ciconia episcopus. Table 2: Species richness, species evenness, and species diversity food sources in the park. During the wet season, the pro- among the study months. ductivity and yield of habitat increase as many of the in- vertebrates breed and the vegetation becomes more Months Species richness H′ H′ E max productive on which the birds depend, and as a result, the August 97 4.05 4.57 0.88 diversity increases. September 100 3.74 4.60 0.81 *e result of this study also showed that the park faced October 92 3.47 4.52 0.76 with five major threats such as expansion of agriculture, fire, January 131 4.15 4.87 0.85 February 96 4.50 4.56 0.98 grazing, mining, and hunting. Expansion of agricultural March 108 2.18 4.68 0.46 fields in and in close of vicinity of the park was causing much severe to avifauna by creating disturbances. Moreover, ir- rigation was the main farming activity along the edge of Tekeze River. *ese agricultural activities absolutely had an impact on the habitat of the bird species. A study conducted 4.6 on human wildlife conflict witnessed that fire, cutting trees, poaching, and farmland were the main anthropogenic im- 4.4 pacts for biodiversity of Kafta Sheraro National Park [28]. Similar challenges were reported in other study area which is 4.2 in Awash National Park [29]. Fire was a common threat of 4.0 Kafta Sheraro National Park that affects feeding and resting places or times of bird species. *e scouts revealed that fire in 3.8 the national park was caused by people who pick up minerals 3.6 illegally from the park. Wildfire is becoming a very serious problem in Kafta Sheraro National Park, destroying thou- 3.4 sands of hectares of the park each year [30]. *e local 3.2 communities brought their cattle into the national park for searching of grazing land and water especially during the dry 3.0 season. *is created interruption in activities of the birds. 0.60 0.65 0.70 0.75 0.80 0.85 0.90 0.95 Mining activity in the park also affected bird species neg- Evenness index atively by destructing their habitat. Illegal gold mining was Seasons challenging in Kafta Sheraro National Park. Habitat dis- Dry turbances by humans have varying effects on the bird species Wet richness and diversity. As human pressure increases, the Figure 3: Seasonal diversity and evenness index of bird species. quality of the forests to harbor different bird species reduces Diversity index 8 International Journal of Zoology environmental and anthropic pressures such as drought, [31]. Habitat disturbance negatively affects avian diversity and abundance [26]. As the discussion made with the local habitat destruction, or illegal hunting. Habitat loss, human persecution, and electrocution on power lines are also po- people who were living near the park forwarded, the local community developed a negative attitude towards the es- tential threats of the species throughout its range. Its current tablishment of the park. *is is because of the fact that they population status is extremely declining [37]. believe that the area is core for agriculture, irrigation, livestock grazing, and mining. *erefore, they believe that 5.5.TawnyEagle(Aquilarapax). Although Aquila rapax is a the park is going to make them lose these things. widespread raptor occurring over large areas of sub-Saharan Africa, with isolated populations in North Africa, the Middle 5. Bird Species of Conservation Concern East, and South Asia, the species is rapid declining from across its African range including the current study area. In In the current study, seven globally threatened bird species this study, habitat destruction due to agricultural expansion, were recorded in the park. Hooded vulture (CR), African fire, and mining was the main threat for the bird species. white-backed vulture (CR), lappet-faced vulture (EN), steppe eagle (EN), tawny eagle (VU), Abyssinian ground hornbill (VU), and woolly-necked stork (VU) were bird 5.6. Abyssinian Ground Hornbill (Bucorvus abyssinicus). species of conservation concern in this study area. *ese bird *e Abyssinian ground hornbill ranges through sub- species were suffered as a result of destruction of their Saharan African savannahs north of the equator. Even habitat, breeding site, and food source due to anthropogenic though determining conservation status of this species is activities including agricultural expansion, fire, mining, and very difficult due to the lack of research, this species is grazing. It is therefore very important to take measures suspected to be declining rapidly as a result of habitat loss toward conserving the threatened bird species. and degradation and hunting for traditional medicine [32]. 5.1. Hooded Vulture (Necrosyrtes monachus). Hooded vul- 5.7. Woolly-Necked Stork (Ciconia episcopus). *is species is ture is native to sub-Saharan Africa. A study indicated that undergoing a rapid population decline mainly due to pol- the population is extremely rapid declining due to poi- lution, habitat loss, and persecution. Its population status in soning, trade for traditional medicine, hunting, persecution, the current study was also observed in few individuals. and electrocution, habitat loss, and degradation [32]. Other study conducted in Dakar, Senegal, indicated that hooded 6. Conclusion vulture has been declining due to exponential urbanization resulting in loss of feeding sites and reduced food avail- *e result of this project showed that Kafta Sheraro National ability, increased poisoning of feral dogs with strychnine Park is one of the areas which has high avian diversity in sulphate due to an upsurge of rabies, and increased disap- Ethiopia. Hence, it is concluded that the park has a good pearance of suitable trees for nesting and roosting [33]. In potential for ornithological tourism that can integrate the current study area, habitat loss and degradation were the economic gain with biodiversity conservation. Specific main threats for the bird species. conclusion on the diversity and composition of bird species might not be possible due to lack of published data that 5.2. African White-Backed Vulture (Gyps africanus). *e describe bird species prior to the current study in the park. African white-backed vulture is widespread across the sa- Based on direct observation and discussion made with local vannahs of Africa occurring from South Africa north to communities and scouts, fire, agricultural activity, mining, Ethiopia and west to Senegal. *is species has declined grazing, and hunting were the major threats that affected severely in parts of its range. Habitat loss, hunting for trade, bird species diversity and abundance in the park. *e current persecution, collisions, and poisoning were the main threats study also identified that the local community developed a of this species. *ese declines are likely to continue into the negative attitude toward the park. future [34]. As the park harbors high number of attractive bird species, ecotourism of the park through wildlife watching in general and ornithological tourism in particular should be 5.3. Lappet-Faced Vulture (Torgos tracheliotos). *e total developed by collaborating with stakeholders. *e number population of lappet-faced vulture is estimated to be de- of bird species recorded in this study may not represent all clining at a very rapid rate. According to Ogada et al. [35], the bird species that are present in Kafta Sheraro National the population of lappet-faced vulture in Africa was de- Park. *erefore, exhaustive survey should have been made in clining by 80% over three generations. *e species are at high all the habitats by increasing the length of the study period risk due to pesticides and poisoning. Lappet-faced vulture is and the sampling area. Continuous efforts should also be regionally extinct from North Africa, Israel, Jordan, and made on minimizing the anthropogenic disturbances by Palestinian territory [36]. controlling the activities that take place inside the national park such as fire, deforestation for agricultural activities, and 5.4. Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis). As steppe eagle is a mining. Organization of awareness creation programmes for long-distance migrant bird, it exposed to varying levels of the local community may also help to develop a positive International Journal of Zoology 9 a basis for management,” Animal Biodiversity and Conser- attitude towards the park to reduce the potential threats on vation, vol. 3, pp. 29–41, 2007. avifauna. [10] J. Shoshani and D. Yirmed, “Report on the Kafta-Sheraro National Park,” in memorial to Professor Jeheskel Shoshani. Data Availability Tigray Region, Ethiopia. S. K. Sikes.1971. 9e African elephant and its natural community life, pp. 256–285, *e Trinity Press, *e data used to support the findings of this research are London, UK, 2008. available from the corresponding author upon request. [11] G. Berihun, D. Yirmed, A. Teshale, and M. Berhane, “Notable records of wintering site of the Demoiselle crane (Anthro- Conflicts of Interest poides virgo) in Kafta-Sheraro National Park, Ethiopia,” Af- rican Cranes, Wetlands and Communities Newsletter, vol. 5, *e authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest. pp. 9–15, 2009. [12] W. J. Sutherland, Ecological Census Techniques: A Hand Book, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 1996. Authors’ Contributions [13] C. J. Redman, M. Johnes, and S. Marsden, “Expedition field *e corresponding author, TG, had taken responsibilities of techniques: bird surveys,” Expedition Advisory Centre of the the proposal drafting, data collection, and writing up of the Royal Geographical Society, vol. 1, pp. 134–137, 2009. [14] M. P. Vergara, E. J. Jimenez, ´ and P. R. Schlatter, “Effective manuscript. *e other authors participated in data collec- point-count duration for estimating bird species’ richness in tion, data analysis, identifying of bird species, and com- Chilean forests,” Zoological Studies, vol. 49, pp. 381–391, 2010. menting on the proposal and manuscript. All authors read [15] A. Shimelis and B. Afework, “Species composition, relative and approved the final manuscript. abundance and distribution of bird fauna of riverine and wetland habitats of Infranz and Yiganda at Southern tip of Acknowledgments Lake Tana, Ethiopia,” Tropical Ecology, vol. 49, pp. 199–209, *e authors thank the office of Kafta Sheraro National Park [16] A. Hailemariam, Y. Meheretu, and H. H. Tsegazeabe, for permitting them the vehicle. *ey also thank all staffs of “Community composition and abundance of residential birds Kafta Sheraro National Park for creating a homely working in selected church forests, Tigray Region, Northern Ethiopia,” environment and their unlimited friendly relationship Scientific Research and Essays, vol. 8, pp. 1038–1047, 2013. during the field investigations they had in the park. Adigrat [17] T. Stevenson and J. Fanshawe, Birds of East Africa: Field University provided the fund of this research for the data Guide, Christopher Helm Black Publishers, Ltd., London, UK, collection with registration number (AGU/CNCS/018/09). [18] B. V. Perlo,Birds of Eastern Africa, Collins Field Guide, Harper Collins Publisher, Hong Kong, China, 2009. References [19] R. N. Stevenson and T. Fanshawe, Helm Field Guides to the Birds of Horn of Africa, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, Somalia [1] D. Vreugdenhil, A. M. Vreugdenhil, T. Tamirat, S. Anteneh, and Socotra, Christopher Helm, London, UK, 2009. and T. Zelealem, Gap Analysis of the Protected Areas System of [20] C. E. Shannon and N. Wiener, 9e Mathematical 9eory of Ethiopia, with Technical Contributions from L. Nagelkerke, K. Communication, *e University of Illinois press, Champaign, Gedeon, S. Spawls, D. Yalden, L. Berhanu, L. Siege, World IL, USA, 1949. Institute for Conservation and Environment, Shepherds, VA, [21] A. Kathleen, K. Nolan, and J. E. Callahan, “*e Shannon- USA, 2012. Weiner species diversity index,” Beachcomber Biology, vol. 27, [2] D. Lepage, “Bird checklists of the Ethiopia, bird life inter- pp. 334–338, 2005. national,” 2018, http://www.bsceoc.org/avibase.2018. [22] A. Shimelis and B. Afework, “Species composition, relative [3] EBI (Ethiopian Biodiversity Institute), Ethiopia’s Fifth Na- abundance and habitat association of the bird fauna of the tional Report to the Convention on Biological Diversity, Montane forest of Zegie Peninsula and nearby islands, Lake Ethiopian Biodiversity Institute, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 2014. Tana, Ethiopia,” SINET: Ethiopian Journal of Science, vol. 32, [4] S. Rajashekara and G. M. Venkatesha, “Community com- no. 1, pp. 45–56, 2009. position of aquatic birds in lakes of Bangalore,” Journal of [23] Z. Girma, G. T. Mengesha, and T. Asfaw, “Diversity, relative Environmental Biology, vol. 32, pp. 77–83, 2011. abundance and distribution of Avian fauna in and around [5] M. Colwell, “*e Church in the forest,” Conservation in Wondo Genet forest, South-Central Ethiopia,” Research Ethiopia, vol. 18, no. 2, 2010. Journal of Forestry, vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 1–12, 2017. [6] C. Sinha, “Wildlife tourism: a geographical perspective,” in [24] E. Kalkidan and B. Afework, “Species composition, relative Proceedings of the Geography Curriculum Inservice abundance and distribution of the avian fauna of Entoto Conference, London, UK, January 2001. Natural Park and escarpment, Addis Ababa,” SINET: Ethio- [7] World Tourism Organization (WTO), World Tourism Or- ganization Towards Measuring the Economic Value of Wildlife pian Journal of Science, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 113–122, 2011. [25] T. Megersa, G. Tsegaye, and G. Gelaye, “Avian diversity in Watching Tourism in Africa-Briefing Paper, UNWTO, Madrid, Spain, 2014. Dhati Walel National Park of Western Ethiopia,” Interna- tional Journal of Molecular Evolution and Biodiversity, vol. 6, [8] A. Nicolaides, “Stakeholders, purposes and responsibilities: avitourism in South Africa,” African Journal of Hospitality pp. 1–12, 2016. [26] A. Assefa, A. B. Davies, A. E. McKechnie, A. A. Kinahan, and Tourism and Leisure, vol. 3, pp. 1–14, 2014. [9] J. Palacio–Nunez, R. J. Verdu, E. Galante, D. 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Naidoo, “Foraging ranges of immature african white-backed vultures (Gyps africanus) and their use of protected areas in Southern Africa,” PLoS One, vol. 8, no. 1, Article ID e52813, 2013. [35] D. Ogada, P. Shaw, R. L. Beyers et al., “Another continental vulture crisis: africa’s vultures collapsing toward extinction,” Conservation Letters, vol. 9, no. 2, pp. 89–97, 2016. [36] BirdLife International, Torgos Tracheliotos: 9e IUCN Red List of 9reatened Species, BirdLife International, Cambridge, UK, [37] B. Meyburg, C. Meyburg, and P. Paillat, “Steppe Eagle mi- gration strategies-revealed by satellite telemetry,” British Birds, vol. 105, pp. 506–519, 2012. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Zoology Hindawi Publishing Corporation

Bird Diversity and Community Composition in Kafta Sheraro National Park, Tigray, Northern Ethiopia

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Hindawi International Journal of Zoology Volume 2020, Article ID 5016804, 10 pages https://doi.org/10.1155/2020/5016804 Research Article Bird Diversity and Community Composition in Kafta Sheraro National Park, Tigray, Northern Ethiopia Teklay Girmay , Zeyede Teshome, and Tesfay Tesfamichael Department of Biology, Adigrat University, P. O. Box 50, Adigrat, Ethiopia Correspondence should be addressed to Teklay Girmay; tekigir9@gmail.com Received 1 October 2019; Revised 19 December 2019; Accepted 27 January 2020; Published 20 February 2020 Academic Editor: Hynek Burda Copyright © 2020 Teklay Girmay et al. *is is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Birds are one of the most important components of biodiversity that has huge ecological, economical, and esthetic values. *e main objective of this study was to assess diversity and species composition of bird community in Kafta Sheraro National Park, Northern Ethiopia. Data were collected from August 2017 to March 2018 in the national park. Point count method was employed to collect data on bird species diversity and species composition. Direct observations of birds and discussion with local people and scouts to assess potential threats of avifauna in the park were made. Shannon diversity index was used to calculate the species diversity. A total of 158 bird species belonging to 52 different families and 20 orders were identified. Of the recorded species, there were 76.6% residents, 15.8% Palaearctic migrants (PM), 5.7% Intra-African migrants (IM), and 1.9% partial migrants. Acci- pitiridae (11.4%) had the highest species followed by Columbidae, Estrilidae, and Ploceidae with 7%, 5.7%, and 4.4% species, respectively. *e highest Shannon–Weiner diversity index (H′ � 4.50) was recorded during February while the lowest (H′ � 2.18) was recorded during March. Species richness of the park showed no significance difference among the study months (χ �10.046, df � 5, P> 0.05). Agricultural expansions, fire, livestock grazing, mining, and poaching were the major threats of the park bird species. Kafta Sheraro National Park is one of the areas with high avian composition in Ethiopia. In the park, wildlife watching in general and ornithological tourism in particular should be developed. Anthropogenic disturbances should also be minimized to conserve avian diversity of the park. birds help in dispersal of seeds. Some birds help in pro- 1. Background duction of nectars and used as source of food in different Ethiopia possesses many designated protected areas in- parts of the world. *ey also serve as indicators of envi- cluding national parks, sanctuaries, priority forests, and ronmental conditions [4, 5]. biosphere reserves. High numbers of biodiversity are found Wildlife tourism is one of the key economic activities for within these conservation areas [1]. Ethiopia is endowed countries that have rich biodiversity and high endemism [6]. with great diversity of flora, fauna, and microbial genetic Economic value of wildlife watching tourism is particularly resources. *e country is one of biodiversity-rich countries important. Accordingly, wildlife watching in general and in the world. According to Lepage [2], Ethiopia is known to bird watching in particular are the most practiced type of the be home for 864 species of birds with 19 endemism. In people’s income in many African countries [7]. Bird addition, the number of mammals, reptile, fish, amphibian, watching is becoming a new area of tourism. It is currently and arthropod species identified so far is 284, 201, 200, 63, developing and generating significant economic benefit in and 1,225, respectively. Of these faunal resources, 29 wild different countries [8]. Countries which are benefiting from mammals, 10 reptiles, 40 fishes, 25 amphibians, and 7 ar- bird watching are those who have documented the necessary thropod species are endemic to the country [3]. Birds are one information on their ornithological studies. Ornithological of the most important components of biodiversity with huge knowledge helps to know the locations or distributions of ecological, economical, and esthetic values. Fruit-eating the birds, their diversity, and to analyze the impact of direct 2 International Journal of Zoology and indirect effects of tourism on biodiversity [9]. However, demoiselle crane are of the few most attractive bird species of no study has assessed the diversity and species composition the park [11]. of the avifauna of Kafta Sheraro National Park. As a result, only few international tourists are visiting it unlike the other 2.2. Data Collection. Before collecting the actual data, pilot Ethiopian National Parks although the national park con- survey was conducted in the study area in order to have tains great biodiversity including birds. *erefore, it is ex- baseline information on the ecology, threats, and bird pected that this project will help to develop bird-watching species of the national park and to decide on the survey tourism of the park. design and sampling strategy. Kafta Sheraro National Park (KSNP) is a newly estab- Data collection was carried out from August 2017 to lished park in Tigray province, Ethiopia. Accordingly, it has March 2018. Field survey was conducted to study the avian little ecological information. Preliminary wildlife assessment species composition and diversity. A stratified random of the park showed that the park is rich in faunal diversity. sampling technique based on the habitat type was used for For instance, caracal (Felis caracal), leopard (Panthera selecting the actual sites for sampling using point count [12]. pardus), greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros), oribi *e sampling unit within the habitat was determined and (Ourebia ourebi), waterbuck (Kobus ellipsiprymnus), aard- assigned on the basis of the area coverage and vegetation vark (Orycteropus afer), roan antelope (Hippotragus equi- type. Bird species were observed using naked eyes and field nus), and the African elephant (Loxodonta africana) are binoculars for better identification [13]. GPS was used to some of the larger mammals known in this area [10]. It is also locate the points for the bird-counting methods. Birds were believed that the park contains different unidentified aquatic surveyed using point count technique which is a systematic and terrestrial bird species [11]. Information about avian search over a fixed area and/or for a fixed time (5 minutes). diversity and abundance is very important for attracting *is allows the observer to record all the bird species around. local and international tourists and for conservation of the Point counts (point transects) are an efficient and inex- species. However, no study has been conducted to investi- pensive survey method for determining avian species gate the diversity and relative abundance of avian species of composition and abundance [14]. A total of sixty point count Kafta Sheraro National Park (KSNP). *us, this study aims stations with 30 m fixed radius apart were established sys- to investigate the diversity and species composition of avian tematically. Observations were made by standing in a series diversity in the national park. of point count stations and observing 360 round and gently up to 30 m radius distance. *e point count stations were 2. Materials and Methods 300 m apart to avoid error of double counting [15]. To minimize disturbance during count, a waiting period of 3 to 2.1. Description of the Study Area. Kafta Sheraro National 5 minutes prior to counting was applied. Bird species were Park (KSNP), which was recognized as a park in 2007 identified and enumerated twice a day that is in the early (Letter, No: 13/37/82/611), is situated in the northwest of morning (8:30–11:30 hr) and in the late afternoon (9:30–11: ° ° ° ° Ethiopia between 14 3′ and 14 27′N and 36 41′ and 37 40′E. 30 hr) where bird activity was maximum and on days with It is located in West and North West zones of the Regional good weather conditions [16]. Surveys were conducted on State of Tigray, Ethiopia. It is found between Kafta Humera, foot. Tahtay Adiyabo, and Welkayit woredas. *e national park is Photographs and videos were captured to count too bordered by Eritrea in the north, and it is presumed to have many birds that were difficult to identify during the field. an estimated total area of 2176.43 km (Figure 1). It is the Bird calls were recorded whenever possible using a tape only national park in Tigray Regional State, and it is about recorder. Colored field guides such as [17–19] were used for 1015 km away from Addis Ababa. Its altitude ranges from identification and categorization of birds to their respective 550 to 1800 masl. *e agroclimatic zone is identified as Qolla taxonomic groups. *e experiences of park experts were also with an inclination to semiarid. Vegetation communities used in the identification of birds based on different mor- within the park include Acacia-Commiphora, Combretum- phological features such as plumage pattern, size, shapes, Terminalia, dry evergreen montane woodlands, and riparian colour, songs, and calls. Observed species were identified types. *e site has a monomodal pattern of rain with high and recorded on the data sheet prepared for that purpose. peaks in May and early September with a mean annual Observation and discussion with nearby villagers and scouts rainfall of about 400–650 mm. *e park is home to many were made to assess potential threats of the avifauna in the ungulates, predators, and other wild animal species. *e park. *e current human activities including livestock in- presence of some mega wild animals such as the African cursion, habitat exploitation, and wildlife utilization were elephant, roan antelope, and the cranes (which use the area closely examined along with the field survey. as a wintering site), and other migratory birds make the park, and its environs a significant site for national and 2.2.1. Data Analysis. *e species diversity of the area was international tourists. Other mammals such as greater kudus and bohor reedbucks are relatively common. *e avifauna of analyzed using Shannon diversity index [20] as follows: the park is rather immense. As a result, the park is registered as one of the 73 important bird areas in Ethiopia. *e ′ H � − 􏽘 (Pi)∗ (ln Pi) , (1) { } brown-headed parrot, Parakeet, little green bee-eater, and i�1 International Journal of Zoology 3 Figure 1: Map showing the location of Kafta Sheraro National Park. where H′ � the Shannon diversity index; P � fraction of the (PM), Intra-African migrants (IM), and partial migrants, entire population made up of species I; S � numbers of respectively. *e remaining 121 (76.6%) bird species were species encountered; 􏽐 � sum from species 1 to species S; residents. KSNP is a home to many attractive avian species. and ln � natural logarithm. A few of them are put in Figure 2. Species richness (S) was calculated by S � 􏽘 n, (2) 3.2. Species Diversity, Species Richness, and Species Evenness. *e Shannon–Weiner diversity index indicated that the where n is the number of species in a community. highest diversity of birds (H′ � 4.50) was recorded during Species evenness, which measures the pattern of dis- February, and the lowest diversity (H′ � 2.18) was recorded tribution of the bird populations present in the area, was during March. Similarly, the highest even distribution of evaluated using Shannon–Wiener evenness index (E) as birds was observed during February (E � 0.98), but the follows [21]: lowest was during March (E � 0.46). *e majority of species was recorded during January with 131 (83%) species fol- E � , (3) lowed by March 108 (68%) and October 92 (58%) (Table 2). max Species richness of the park showed no significant difference where E � Shannon–Wiener evenness index; H′ � Shannon– between the study months (χ �10.046, df � 5, P> 0.05). *e Wiener diversity index; and H � lnS � natural logarithm of max wet season diversity index (H′ � 4.6) was higher than that of the total number of species (S). the dry season (H′ � 3.2). Evenness index was also higher Data collected during the study period were analyzed during the wet season (E � 0.94) than the dry season using SPSS software package version 20. Chi-square test was (E � 0.64) (Figure 3). used to test difference of species richness among the study months. Moreover, the collected data were analyzed and 4. Discussion interpreted through tabulation and percentage. *e result of the current study showed that Kafta Sheraro National Park harbored high diversity (H′ � 2.18 up to 4.50) 3. Results and species composition (158 species) because of the ideal 3.1. Species Composition. A total of 158 bird species be- habitat condition of the study area for avifauna. *is could longing to 52 different families and 20 orders were identified be due to various vegetation types and weather conditions of during the surveys. Of the identified bird species, family the park and location of the Tekeze River along the park. *is Accipitiridae 18 (11.4%) had the highest species followed by may provide foraging, breeding, nesting, and other survival Columbidae, Estrilidae, and Ploceidae with 11 (7%), 9 opportunities for both aquatic and terrestrial bird species. (5.7%), and 7 (4.4%) number of species, respectively. *e Moreover, the highest diversity and species composition of lowest number of species was recorded from families avifauna in the park might be due to the situation in which Anatidae, Apodidae, Bucorvidae, Burhinidae, Phoeniculi- both aquatic and terrestrial bird species inhabit because dae, Upupidae, Pluvianidae, Numididae, Phasianidae, Tekeze River bounds all parts of the park. *is situation may Leiothrichidae, Monarchidae, Prionopidae, Pycnonotidae, create the park to have high number of aquatic bird species Scopidae, Indicatoridae, Picidae, Strigidae, and Tytonidae in addition to terrestrial bird species. *is study showed that with one species each (Table 1). Among the recorded species, species composition of Kafta Sheraro National Park is 25 (15.8%), 9 (5.7%), and 3 (1.9%) were Palaearctic migrants highest as compared with other similar studies conducted in 4 International Journal of Zoology Table 1: List of bird species recorded in Kafta Sheraro National Park. Order Family Common name Scientific name IUCN status Accipitroformes Accipitiridae Brown snake eagle Circaetus cinereus LC African fish eagle Haliaeetus vocifer LC Long-crested eagle Laphaetus occipitalis LC Gabar goshawk Micronisus gabar LC Black kite Milvus migrans LC Black-shouldered kite Elanus caeruleus LC Lappet-faced vulture Torgos tracheliotos EN Hooded vulture Necrosyrtes monachus CR African white-backed vulture Gyps africanus CR Long-legged buzzard Buteo rufinus LC Dark chanting goshawk Melierax metabates LC Long-crested eagle Lophaetus occipitalis LC Tawny eagle Aquila rapax VU Bateleur Terathopius ecaudatus NT Steppe eagle Aquila nipalensis EN Common buzzard Buteo buteo LC African cuckoo hawk Aviceda cuculoides LC African harrier hawk Polyboroidees typus LC Anseriformes Anatidae Egyptian goose Alopochen aegyptiaca LC Apodiformes Apodidae Africa palm swift Cypsiurus parvus LC Bucerotiformes Bucerotidae African grey hornbill Lophoceros nasutus LC Northern red-billed hornbill Tockus erythrorhynchus LC Hemprich’s hornbill Lophoceros hemprichii LC Bucorvidae Abyssinian ground hornbill Bucorvus abyssinicus VU Phoeniculidae Black-billied wood hoopoe Phoeniculus somaliensis LC Upupidae Eurasian hoopoe Upupa epops LC Caprimulgiformes Caprimulgidae Egyptian nightjar Caprimulgus aegyptius LC Long-tailed nightjar Caprimulgus climacurus LC Charadriiformes Burhinidae Senegal thick-knee Burhinus senegalensis LC Charadriidae *ree-banded plover Charadrius tricollaris LC Spur winged lapwing Vanellus spinosus LC Little-ringed plover Charadrius dubius LC Black-headed plover Vanellus tectus LC Pluvianidae Egyptian plover Pluvianus aegyptius LC Scolopacidae Common sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos LC Wood sandpiper Tringa glareola LC Common greenshank Tringa nebularia LC Ciconiiformes Ciconiidae Abdim’s stork Ciconia abdimii LC Woolly-necked stork Ciconia episcopus VU Yellow-billed stork Mycteria ibis LC White stork Ciconia ciconia LC Coliiformes Coliidae Speckled mousebird Colius stariatus LC Blue-naped mousebird Urocolius macrourus LC Columbiformes Columbidae Laughing dove Stigmatopelia senegalensis LC Ring naked dove Streptopelia capicola LC Vinaceous dove Streptopelia vinacea LC Black-billed wood-dove Turtur abyssinicus LC Red-eyed dove Streptopelia semitorquata LC Namaqua dove Oena capensis LC African mourning dove Streptopelia decipiens LC African collared-dove Streptopelia roseogrisea LC Emerald-spotted wood dove Turtur chalcospilos LC Bruce’s green pigeon Treron waalia LC Speckled pigeon Columba guinea LC Coraciiformes Alcedinidae Giant kingfisher Megaceryle maxima LC Pied kingfisher Ceryle rudis LC Pygmy kingfisher Ispidina picta LC Mangrove kingfisher Halcyon senegaloides LC Malachite kingfisher Corythornis cristatus LC Coraciidae Abyssinian roller Coracias abyssinicus LC Purple roller Coracias naevius LC International Journal of Zoology 5 Table 1: Continued. Order Family Common name Scientific name IUCN status Meropidae Blue-breasted Bee-eater Merops variegates LC Blue cheeked bee-eater Merops persicus LC Little bee-eater Merops pusillus LC White-throated bee-eater Merops albicollis LC Little green bee-eater Merops orientalis LC Northern carmine bee-eater Merops nubicus LC Cuculiformes Cuculidae White-browed coucal Centropus superciliosus LC Blue-headed coucal Centropus monachus LC Falconiformes Falconidae Common kestrel Falco tinnunculus LC Grey kestrel Falco ardosiaceus LC Peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus LC Gruiformes Gruidae Common crane Grus grus LC Demoiselle crane Anthropoides virgo LC Galliformes Numididae Helmeted guineafowl Numida meleagris LC Phasianidae Clapperton’s francolin Pternistis clappertoni LC Passeriformes Acrocephalidae African yellow warbler Iduna natalensis LC Eastern olivaceous warbler Iduna pallida LC Alaudidae *ekla lark Galerida theklae LC Rufous rumped lark Pinarocorys erythropygia LC Black crowned sparrow lark Eremopterix nigriceps LC Buphagidae Red-billed oxpecker Buphagus erythrorhynchus LC Yellow-billed oxpecker Buphagus africanus LC Emberizidae Cinnamon breasted bunting Emberiza tahapisi LC Golden breasted bunting Emberiza flaviventris LC Estrildidae Red-billed firefinch Lagonosticta senegala LC Red-cheeked cordonbleu Uraeginthus bengalus LC Southern cordonbleu Uraeginthus angolensis LC Yellow-billed waxbill Coccopygia quartinia LC Fawn-breasted waxbill Estrilda paludicola LC Common waxbill Estrilda astrild LC Bronze mannikin Lonchura cucullata LC African silver bill Eudica cantans LC Black-rumped waxbill Estrildida troglodytes LC Hirundinidae Ethiopian swallow Hirundo aethiopica LC Wire-tailed swallow Hirundi smithii LC Laniidae Lesser grey shrike Lanius minor LC Red-backed shrike Lanius collurio LC Woodchat shrike Lanius senator LC Masked shrike Lanius nubicus LC Leiothrichidae White-headed babbler Turdoides leucocephala LC Malaconotidae Black-headed gonolek Laniarius erythrogaster LC Northern puffback Dryoscopus gambensis LC Ethiopian boubou Laniarius aethiopicus LC Monarchidae African paradise flycatcher Terpsiphone viridis LC Motacillidae Western yellow wagtail Motacilla flava LC White wagtail Motacilla alba LC African pied wagtail Motacilla aguimp LC Muscicapidae Common rock thrush Monticola saxatilis LC Black scrub robin Cercotrichas podobe LC Northern wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe LC Pied wheatear Oenanthe pleschanka LC Mocking cliff chat 9amnolaea cinamomeiventris LC Nectariniidae Scarlet-chested sunbird Chalcomaitra senegalensis LC Mariqua sunbird Cinnyris mariquiensis LC Malachite sunbird Nectarinia famosa LC Shining sunbird Cinnyris habessinicus LC Black-billed sunbird Cinnyris nectarinioides LC Passeridae Northern grey-headed sparrow Passer griseus LC Shelley’s rufous sparrow Passer shelleyi LC Ploceidae Black-headed weaver Ploceus melanocephalus LC Northern-red bishop Euplectes nigroventris LC 6 International Journal of Zoology Table 1: Continued. Order Family Common name Scientific name IUCN status Little weaver Ploceus luteolus LC Speckle-fronted weaver Sporopipes frontalis LC White-billed buffalo weaver Bubalornis albirostris LC Village weaver Ploceus cucullatus LC Red-headed quelea Quelea erythrops LC Prionopidae White-crested helmet shrike Prionops plumatus LC Pycnonotidae Common bulbul Pycnonotus barbatus LC Sturnidae Ruppell’s long-tailed starling Lamprotornis purpuroptera LC Stuhlmann’s starling Poeoptera stuhlmanni LC Greater blue-eared starling Lamprotornis chalybaeus LC Lesser blue-eared starling Lamprotornis chloropterus LC Red-winged starling Onychognatus morio LC Chestnut-bellied starling Lamprotornis pulcher LC Viduidae Village indigobird Vidua chalybeate LC Sahel paradise whydah Vidua orientalis LC Eastern paradise whydah Vidua paradisaea LC Pin-tailed whydah Vidua macroura LC Pelecaniformes Ardeidae Grey heron Ardea cinerea LC Cattle egret Bubulcus ibis LC Little egret Egretta garzetta LC Black-headed heron Ardea melanocephala LC *rekiornithidae Glossy ibis Plegadis falcinellus LC Sacred ibis 9reskiornis aethiopicus LC African spoonbill Platalea alba LC Scopidae Hamerkop Scopus umbretta LC Piciformes Indicatoridae Greater honeyguide Indicator indicator LC Picidae Nubian woodpecker Campethera nubica LC Lybiidae Black-billed barbet Lybius guifsobalito LC Yellow-breasted barbet Trachyphonus margaritatus LC Psittaciformes Psittacidae Rose-ringed parakeet Psittacula krameri LC Meyer’s parrot Poicephalus meyeri LC Pterocliformes Pteroclidae Lichtenstein’s sandgrouse Pterocles lichtensteinii LC Four-banded sandgrouse Pterocles quadricinctus LC Chestnut-bellied sandgrouse Pterocles exustus LC Strigiformes Strigidae African scopes owl Otus senegalensis LC Tytonidae Barn owl Tyto alba LC Note. ♠ � Palaearctic migrant, ∗ � Intra-African migrant, ♥ � partial migrant, unmarked species are resident birds, LC � least concern, NT �near threatened, VU � vulnerable, EN � endangered, and CR � critically endangered. other parts of Ethiopia [22–25]. Changes in vegetation effect of migratory bird species. *e availability of resources, composition and structure of habitat complexity and suit- especially plenty food supply, may increase the diversity of ability, a change over the time, affect bird species compo- avian species at a given area [24]. *e highest and lowest sition [26]. Kafta Sheraro National Park is a home for 15.8%, number of species (S) was recorded during January and 5.7%, and 1.9% Palaearctic migrants (PM), Intra-African October with 83% and 68% species, respectively. *e high migrants (IM), and partial migrants, respectively. *is number of bird richness in January may be due to the revealed that the park is very important for migratory bird migratory birds which migrate to the park from different species in addition to sedentary birds. directions of the globe. Bird species are migrating to Kafta Sheraro National Park for feeding during the winter. *e Higher diversity of index was recorded during February (H′ � 4.50) followed by January (H′ � 4.15) and August researchers observed that there were migratory birds that arrive in the park starting from January and leave at the end (H′ � 4.05) while the lowest diversity index was recorded during March and October with (H′ � 2.18 and H′ � 3.47), of April. *e lowest number of bird species during October respectively. *is showed that both species richness and might be due to temporary migration of bird species from evenness were high during February, January, and August. the park to the nearest agricultural fields that provide al- In ecological studies, the Shannon–Weiner diversity index is ternative temporary seasonal foraging and nesting oppor- greater than 4 as both the richness and the evenness of the tunities to the birds. *is could decrease their abundance in community have increased [27]. *e difference in avian their natural habitat [15]. *e diversity index result showed diversity among the study months might be associated with that the species diversity during the wet season was higher the availability of the food source among the months and the than the dry season. *is might be due to the presence of International Journal of Zoology 7 (a) (b) (c) (d) (e) (f) Figure 2: Few attractive bird species located in KSNP. (a) Pluvianus aegyptius. (b) Pterocles lichtensteinii. (c) Burhinus senegalensis. (d) Micronisus gabar. (e) Bubulcus ibis. (f) Ciconia episcopus. Table 2: Species richness, species evenness, and species diversity food sources in the park. During the wet season, the pro- among the study months. ductivity and yield of habitat increase as many of the in- vertebrates breed and the vegetation becomes more Months Species richness H′ H′ E max productive on which the birds depend, and as a result, the August 97 4.05 4.57 0.88 diversity increases. September 100 3.74 4.60 0.81 *e result of this study also showed that the park faced October 92 3.47 4.52 0.76 with five major threats such as expansion of agriculture, fire, January 131 4.15 4.87 0.85 February 96 4.50 4.56 0.98 grazing, mining, and hunting. Expansion of agricultural March 108 2.18 4.68 0.46 fields in and in close of vicinity of the park was causing much severe to avifauna by creating disturbances. Moreover, ir- rigation was the main farming activity along the edge of Tekeze River. *ese agricultural activities absolutely had an impact on the habitat of the bird species. A study conducted 4.6 on human wildlife conflict witnessed that fire, cutting trees, poaching, and farmland were the main anthropogenic im- 4.4 pacts for biodiversity of Kafta Sheraro National Park [28]. Similar challenges were reported in other study area which is 4.2 in Awash National Park [29]. Fire was a common threat of 4.0 Kafta Sheraro National Park that affects feeding and resting places or times of bird species. *e scouts revealed that fire in 3.8 the national park was caused by people who pick up minerals 3.6 illegally from the park. Wildfire is becoming a very serious problem in Kafta Sheraro National Park, destroying thou- 3.4 sands of hectares of the park each year [30]. *e local 3.2 communities brought their cattle into the national park for searching of grazing land and water especially during the dry 3.0 season. *is created interruption in activities of the birds. 0.60 0.65 0.70 0.75 0.80 0.85 0.90 0.95 Mining activity in the park also affected bird species neg- Evenness index atively by destructing their habitat. Illegal gold mining was Seasons challenging in Kafta Sheraro National Park. Habitat dis- Dry turbances by humans have varying effects on the bird species Wet richness and diversity. As human pressure increases, the Figure 3: Seasonal diversity and evenness index of bird species. quality of the forests to harbor different bird species reduces Diversity index 8 International Journal of Zoology environmental and anthropic pressures such as drought, [31]. Habitat disturbance negatively affects avian diversity and abundance [26]. As the discussion made with the local habitat destruction, or illegal hunting. Habitat loss, human persecution, and electrocution on power lines are also po- people who were living near the park forwarded, the local community developed a negative attitude towards the es- tential threats of the species throughout its range. Its current tablishment of the park. *is is because of the fact that they population status is extremely declining [37]. believe that the area is core for agriculture, irrigation, livestock grazing, and mining. *erefore, they believe that 5.5.TawnyEagle(Aquilarapax). Although Aquila rapax is a the park is going to make them lose these things. widespread raptor occurring over large areas of sub-Saharan Africa, with isolated populations in North Africa, the Middle 5. Bird Species of Conservation Concern East, and South Asia, the species is rapid declining from across its African range including the current study area. In In the current study, seven globally threatened bird species this study, habitat destruction due to agricultural expansion, were recorded in the park. Hooded vulture (CR), African fire, and mining was the main threat for the bird species. white-backed vulture (CR), lappet-faced vulture (EN), steppe eagle (EN), tawny eagle (VU), Abyssinian ground hornbill (VU), and woolly-necked stork (VU) were bird 5.6. Abyssinian Ground Hornbill (Bucorvus abyssinicus). species of conservation concern in this study area. *ese bird *e Abyssinian ground hornbill ranges through sub- species were suffered as a result of destruction of their Saharan African savannahs north of the equator. Even habitat, breeding site, and food source due to anthropogenic though determining conservation status of this species is activities including agricultural expansion, fire, mining, and very difficult due to the lack of research, this species is grazing. It is therefore very important to take measures suspected to be declining rapidly as a result of habitat loss toward conserving the threatened bird species. and degradation and hunting for traditional medicine [32]. 5.1. Hooded Vulture (Necrosyrtes monachus). Hooded vul- 5.7. Woolly-Necked Stork (Ciconia episcopus). *is species is ture is native to sub-Saharan Africa. A study indicated that undergoing a rapid population decline mainly due to pol- the population is extremely rapid declining due to poi- lution, habitat loss, and persecution. Its population status in soning, trade for traditional medicine, hunting, persecution, the current study was also observed in few individuals. and electrocution, habitat loss, and degradation [32]. Other study conducted in Dakar, Senegal, indicated that hooded 6. Conclusion vulture has been declining due to exponential urbanization resulting in loss of feeding sites and reduced food avail- *e result of this project showed that Kafta Sheraro National ability, increased poisoning of feral dogs with strychnine Park is one of the areas which has high avian diversity in sulphate due to an upsurge of rabies, and increased disap- Ethiopia. Hence, it is concluded that the park has a good pearance of suitable trees for nesting and roosting [33]. In potential for ornithological tourism that can integrate the current study area, habitat loss and degradation were the economic gain with biodiversity conservation. Specific main threats for the bird species. conclusion on the diversity and composition of bird species might not be possible due to lack of published data that 5.2. African White-Backed Vulture (Gyps africanus). *e describe bird species prior to the current study in the park. African white-backed vulture is widespread across the sa- Based on direct observation and discussion made with local vannahs of Africa occurring from South Africa north to communities and scouts, fire, agricultural activity, mining, Ethiopia and west to Senegal. *is species has declined grazing, and hunting were the major threats that affected severely in parts of its range. Habitat loss, hunting for trade, bird species diversity and abundance in the park. *e current persecution, collisions, and poisoning were the main threats study also identified that the local community developed a of this species. *ese declines are likely to continue into the negative attitude toward the park. future [34]. As the park harbors high number of attractive bird species, ecotourism of the park through wildlife watching in general and ornithological tourism in particular should be 5.3. Lappet-Faced Vulture (Torgos tracheliotos). *e total developed by collaborating with stakeholders. *e number population of lappet-faced vulture is estimated to be de- of bird species recorded in this study may not represent all clining at a very rapid rate. According to Ogada et al. [35], the bird species that are present in Kafta Sheraro National the population of lappet-faced vulture in Africa was de- Park. *erefore, exhaustive survey should have been made in clining by 80% over three generations. *e species are at high all the habitats by increasing the length of the study period risk due to pesticides and poisoning. Lappet-faced vulture is and the sampling area. Continuous efforts should also be regionally extinct from North Africa, Israel, Jordan, and made on minimizing the anthropogenic disturbances by Palestinian territory [36]. controlling the activities that take place inside the national park such as fire, deforestation for agricultural activities, and 5.4. Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis). As steppe eagle is a mining. Organization of awareness creation programmes for long-distance migrant bird, it exposed to varying levels of the local community may also help to develop a positive International Journal of Zoology 9 a basis for management,” Animal Biodiversity and Conser- attitude towards the park to reduce the potential threats on vation, vol. 3, pp. 29–41, 2007. avifauna. [10] J. Shoshani and D. Yirmed, “Report on the Kafta-Sheraro National Park,” in memorial to Professor Jeheskel Shoshani. Data Availability Tigray Region, Ethiopia. S. K. Sikes.1971. 9e African elephant and its natural community life, pp. 256–285, *e Trinity Press, *e data used to support the findings of this research are London, UK, 2008. available from the corresponding author upon request. [11] G. Berihun, D. Yirmed, A. Teshale, and M. 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Schlatter, “Effective manuscript. *e other authors participated in data collec- point-count duration for estimating bird species’ richness in tion, data analysis, identifying of bird species, and com- Chilean forests,” Zoological Studies, vol. 49, pp. 381–391, 2010. menting on the proposal and manuscript. All authors read [15] A. Shimelis and B. Afework, “Species composition, relative and approved the final manuscript. abundance and distribution of bird fauna of riverine and wetland habitats of Infranz and Yiganda at Southern tip of Acknowledgments Lake Tana, Ethiopia,” Tropical Ecology, vol. 49, pp. 199–209, *e authors thank the office of Kafta Sheraro National Park [16] A. Hailemariam, Y. Meheretu, and H. H. 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Journal

International Journal of ZoologyHindawi Publishing Corporation

Published: Feb 20, 2020

References