Forest structure under different management regimes in the Western Lowlands of Nepal Article

Timilsina, N, Heinen, JT. (2008). Forest structure under different management regimes in the Western Lowlands of Nepal . JOURNAL OF SUSTAINABLE FORESTRY, 26(2), 112-131. 10.1080/10549810701879628

cited authors

  • Timilsina, N; Heinen, JT



  • For landscape level conservation and rural sustenance, forests outside of protected areas are becoming increasingly important. Since most outside forests in the lowlands of Nepal are under government control and utilized as open access resources, their feasibility to achieve these objectives is questionable. We compared forests inside (with three decades of strict protection) and outside of protected areas (under government control and proposed as community forests) to assess the ecological sustainability of outside forests and to provide baseline data on structure of outside forests so that effectiveness of community forestry (after implementation) can be evaluated in the future. Our results indicate that outside forests were in a degraded condition with low tree, sapling and seedling densities and lower species diversity. Trees in lower dbh (diameter at breast height) classes were absent in these forests. Although the canopy layer was not significantly different, the ordination of plots and species showed that species composition of understory and the ground layer were different than protected forests. The present condition of outside forests is not only ecologically unsustainable but also cannot fulfill the demands for forest products of local people. The inefficiency of government to monitor against exploitation has been responsible for present conditions. We recommend that community forestry programs, which are successful in improving conditions of degraded forests in the mountains of Nepal, should be widely implemented in lowland areas (Terai) and proposed community forests should be handed over to local communities as soon as it is practicable. © 2008 by The Haworth Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

publication date

  • December 1, 2008

published in

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

start page

  • 112

end page

  • 131


  • 26


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