Mountain Rain forest

Mountain Rain forest and its secondary vegetation.  

The mountain rain forest stretches from the altitude of 900-2300m, its dominating species are albizia gummifera, parinari excelsum and chrysophyllum gorungosanum. Between 900m and 1350 m the forest is low altitude forest with michelsonia and gilbertiodendrom. Towards 1800m, this is followed by the low mountain forest with pentadesma and lebrunia. This is a timber forest with sufficient light to allow growth of a layer of herbaceous plants. This type of forest is protected against fire as it cannot penetrate into it.

After humans have disturbed the equilibrium, this forest often becomes a shrub forest with a dense understory and many lianas.  The best known secondary vegetation type is the hagenia forest. This vegetation type is the result of minor interventions such as the cutting of undergrowth to make pasture for livestock.

The existence of herbaceous savannas at this altitude is due to massive deforestation. All the places where light penetrates to the ground, such as all the clearings are colonised by the ubiquitions fern pteridium aquilinum which the livestock won’t eat.

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