Have the Tsetse Clearings in the Babati District, Tanzania, Influenced the Spread of Agriculture Land?
The clearing of woodland to eradicate the tsetse fly in the Babati district, Tanzania, was a governmental initiative. The clearings were mainly carried out in the mid 20th century and managed to reduce the tsetse fly by a great amount. The clearings opened up remote areas and made it possible to access areas that had previously been unavailable for humans. The clearing also had an enormous impact on the environment. This is a case study on five different areas in the Babati district that have all been subjected to tsetse clearings. The studied areas are Bonga, Kiru Erri Kiru Valley, Magugu and Mamire.
The fieldwork consisted of semi-structured interviews and transect walks. The purpose was to study if the clearings have had any influence over the spreading of agriculture land that were not cultivated before and to inquire into the most significant environmental impact that the clearings had.
Different outcome in agriculture land spreading due to the clearings could be seen in the five studied areas. In Bonga and Kiru Valley no agriculture started after the clearings, but in Kiru Erri, Magugu and Mamire some of cleared land is nowadays used for agriculture. The result of the fieldwork indicates that the clearings have had noticeable influence over the spreading of agriculture land but there were also other important driving forces. These were increase in population, land degradation, land shortages and the politic agenda. The most important negative environmental impact due to the clearings was erosion.
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Date of Publication:01/01/2009