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ABSTRACT

The concern of humanity is the need to tackle the increasing challenges of severe land degradation and desertification of the ecosystem. The study examined the critical role of agroforestry practices in sustainable land management in rural areas of Kaduna State, Nigeria. Purposive sampling technique was employed in collecting data from three hundred and fifty-seven (357) rural farmers with structured questionnaire administered in threeLocal Government Areas of Kaduna State, namely Chikun, Zaria and Kubau.The data were analyzed using statistics such as simple Percentage, Tables, graphs, charts and Chi square to test for the hypothesis. The study result showed the socio- economic characteristics of farmers in the rural areas such as age, gender, marital status, educational level, farm size, farming experience and farm ownership.From the study, different land management practices were examined, and result showed that30% farmers adopt irrigation and fertilizer each, 21% of them practiced application of organic manure, 10% and 4% adopted mulching and cover crops respectively. Bush fallow and crop rotation are practiced by 4% and 1% respectively. Also from the study, it was discovered that 73% of farmers believed that the presence of the trees in their various farms helped them to control erosion, while only 17% and 4% applied Mulching and cover crops respectively. The rest of the 3% applied organic manure and other methods to control erosion.It was discovered from the survey that about 87% practiced agroforestry, while only 13% of the total sampled did not practice agroforestry. Also discovered that 83% respondents considered agroforestry as a land management practice, while only 16% did not consider it as means of land management practices and only 1% were indifferent.The types of agroforestry practiced by the respondents in the study area are as follows, most of the farmers 62% practiced parkland, followed by windbreak/shelterbelt with 15%, the next one is living fence or boundary system with 10%, followed by forest farming with 6%, alley cropping, riparian buffer system are practiced by 4% each, only 1% practiced silvopasture, the rest representing 11% did not practice any of these systems.The trees and shrubs species most favoured by majority of the farmers are Mangifera indica, Parkia clappertoniana, Butyrospermum paradoxum,Psidium guajava,Azadirachta indica,Adansonia digitata, Anacardium occidantale, Moringa oleifera, Anogeissus leiocapus, Musa sappientum.The pattern of crop production showed that Maize, Tomatoes, Sorghum, Rice and Pepper are the principal crops in the study area since more than one-quarter of the total sampled cultivate them every year. Other crops common in the area but are produced at insignificant measure by few farmers are Ground nut, Onion, Millet, Green Beans, Carrot, Cabbage and Sweet Potatoes. On the basis of the findings, the study recommends that, education and research should be promoted, local involvement should be encouraged, financial support should be provided and policy should be reformed. It was therefore concluded that, there is need for an aggressive agroforestry extension to convince farmers to adopt a sustainable land management farming system like agroforestry, which is fast disappearing from the earlier practices. Hence, the role of agroforestry practices in ensuring sustainable use of land, upholding ecological equilibrium and maintaining the environment should be put in the right perspective.

 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Title Page i Declaration ii Certification iii Acknowledgement iv Abstract v Table of Content vi List of Tables ix List of Figures x List of Appendices xi CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION 1 1.1 Background to the Study 1 1.2 Statement of the Research Problem 6 1.3 Aim and Objectives of the Study 11 1.4 Hypothesis 11 1.5 Scope of the Study 12 1.6 Significance of the Study 12 CHAPTER TWO: CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORKAND LITERATURE REVIEW 13 2.1 Conceptual Framework 13 2.1.1 Concept of agroforestry 13 2.1.2 Concept of Sustainability 13 2.2 Literature Review 14 2.2.1 Origin of Agroforestry Practice 14 2.2.2 Modern Agroforestry 16 2.2.3 Types of Agroforestry Practices in Nigeria 17
2.2.4 Contributions of Agroforestry in Rehabilitation of Degraded Land 19
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2.2.5 Ecological Benefits of Agroforestry 20 2.2.6 Sustainable Land Management 22 2.2.7 Issues of Sustainable Land Management 23 2.2.8 Nature of Sustainable Land Management 26 2.2.9 Land Degradation 28 2.2.10 Focus on Sustainable Land Management 30 2.3 Land Management Practices 31 2.3.1 Mulching and Crop Residues 31 2.3.2 Crop Rotations 33 2.3.3 Fallows 34 2.3.4 Crop Diversification/Inter-Cropping 36 2.3.5 Conservation Tillage and Conservation Agriculture 37 2.3.6 Organic Agriculture 40 2.3.7 Integrated Plant Nutrient Management 42 2.3.8 Integrated Plant and Pest Management 45 2.3.9 Manure Management 46 2.3.10 Fire Reduction in Forest Management 47 2.3.11 Irrigation System 49 2.4.1 Agroforestry Practices and Sustainable Land Management 49 2.4.2 Challenges of Agroforestry Practices 53 CHAPTER THREE: THE STUDY AREA AND METHODOLOGY 55 3.1 Study Area 55 3.1.1 Location 55 3.1.2 Climate 55 3.1.3 Soil 57 3.1.4 Vegetation 57
3.1.5 People and Occupation 57
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3.2 Methodology 58 3.2.1 Reconnaissance Survey 58 3.2.2 Types of Data 58 3.2.3 Sources of Data 58 3.2.3.1 Primary Sources of Data 58 3.2.3.2 Secondary Sources of Data 59 3.3.1 Sample Size and Sampling Technique 60 3.3.3.1 Sample of the Study 61 3.3.4 Methods of Data Analysis 63 CHAPTER FOUR: DATA ANALYSIS AND DISCUSSION OF RESULTS 64 4.1 Socio-Economic Characteristics of Respondents in the Study Area 64 4.1.1 Gender of the Respondents 64 4.1.2 Age of the Respondents 64 4.1.3 Marital Status of the Respondents 65 4.1.4 Educational Level of the Respondents 65 4.1.5 Years of Farming Experience 65 4.1.6 Farm Size of the Respondents 65 4.1.7 System of Farm Ownership 66 4.1.8 Sources of Farm Labour 67 4.2 Land Management Practices in the Study Area 69 4.2.1 Land Management Practices by the Respondents 69 4.2.2 Land Management Practices Alternative to Agroforestry 69 4.2.3 Determinant Factors for Land Management Practices 70 4.3 Agroforestry Practices in the Study Area 73 4.4 Justification of the role of Agroforestry with farm products 78 4.4.1 Types of Crops Produce in the Study Area 78
4.5 Hypothesis Testing 79
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CHAPTRER FIVE: SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS 81 5.1 Summary of Findings 81 5.2 Conclusion 82 5.3 Recommendations 83 References 86 Appendices 94

 

 

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION 1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY In recent times, it has become obvious that to achieve much success on sustainable land management, Farming System, Research and Extension have to be intensified. This involves improving and modifying where necessary the farmers methods of land management, soil improvement. Sustainability means making things last, making them permanent and durable. What is being sustained can be an object of choice such as economy, industry, ecosystem or set of ecosystem, (Pearce, 1988). The need and means for ensuring sustainable development should transcend all generations and be international in scope, if long lasting records are to be obtained (Mamman and Ogbonna, 1993). Thus, the ecology debate of the past twenty-five years has been characterized by increasing concern for problems of the whole; Man, biota, the globe and the biosphere (Pearce and Atkinson, 1993). Growing population pressure and unabating droughts in recent years together with excessive deforestation, overgrazing and yearly bush burning have all combined to bring about rapid rate of desertification in the northern fringes of Nigeria, particularly Kaduna State which is the study area. Desertification is a term used to describe the spread of desert-like conditions in arid or semi-arid environment such as steppe and Savanna (UNCOD, 1977). The feasible approach to stem the environmental problems should be interdisciplinary and take into account, concurrent production of food, wood and animal products for the overall well-being of the rural and urban populace. A collection of Agroforestry systems which have the potentials to providing food, fodder, fuel wood, crops and livestock products is the obvious answer.
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Sustainable land managementis the adoption of land use systems that, through appropriate management practices, enables land users to maximize the economic and social benefits from the land while maintaining or enhancing the ecological support functions of the land resources (FAO, 2009). Sustainable land managementis the key entry point for improving land resource resilience and productivity within the context of the potentially devastating effects of climate change in Africa, bridging the needs of agriculture and environment. Land refers to cropland, range, pasture, forest and woodlands. Land is defined by the UN Convention to Combat Desertification as the terrestrial biologically productive system that comprises soil, vegetation, other biota and the ecological and hydrological processes that operate within the system. Within the sphere of agriculture, Sustainable land management includes the maintenance over time of soil productivity. This requires the combination of soil fertility treatment (perhaps including application of mineral and organic fertilizers) with soil and water conservation measures (implementation of agronomic, soil management and physical measures, such as contour ridging, terracing, tied ridges or providing ground cover through mulching, use of plants and leaving crop residues). Recent evidence demonstrates returns on Sustainable land managementinvestments (forestry, soil and water conservation, irrigation) ranging from 12 to 40 percent in East and West Africa (Reij and Steeds, 2003). However, the incentive mechanisms for change are often poorly understood. It is a vital prerequisite for successful adaptation and mitigation that land users have enhanced knowledge and understanding of climate change and how Sustainable land managementcan assist them in coping with its impacts. Ultimately, land users in Africa will make their own choices, based on expected net returns. This will always be in the context of the land users‟ understanding of the likely impacts of climate change and existing agriculture and environmental policies.
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Agroforestry can be defined as an approach to land use based on the deliberate integration of trees and shrubs in crop and livestock production systems. The practice can help to ensure sustained productivity of crops and animals by protecting and enhancing the natural resources base. Agroforestry is the intentional mixing of trees and shrubs into crop and animal production systems to create environmental, economic, and social benefits (USDA, 2011). The foundation of agroforestry is putting trees to work in conservation and production systems for farms, forests, ranches, and communities. Agroforestry begins with placing the right plant, in the right place, for the right purpose (USDA, 2011). Trees play a crucial role in almost all terrestrial ecosystems. They provide a wide range of products and services to rural and urban people. As natural vegetation is cleared for agriculture, trees are integrated into productive landscapes – the practice known as agroforestry.
Agroforestry is practiced by millions of farmers, and has been a feature of agriculture for millennia. It encompasses a wide range of working trees that are grown on farms and in rural landscapes, and includes the generation of science-based tree enterprise opportunities that can be important in the future. Among these are: fertilizer trees for land regeneration, soil health and food security; fruit trees for nutrition and income; fodder trees that improve smallholder livestock production; timber and fuel wood trees for shelter and energy; medicinal trees to combat disease, particularly where there is no pharmacy; and trees that produce gums, resins or latex products (Garrity, 2004). Many of these trees have multiple uses, each providing a range of benefits. An estimated 1.2 billion rural people currently practice agroforestry on their farms and in their communities, and depend upon its products (World Bank, 2004). Their tree-based enterprises help ensure food and nutritional security, increase their income and assets,
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and help solve their land management problems. Trees play a particularly pivotal role wherever people depend on fragile ecosystems for survival and sustenance. Agroforestry is a unique land management approach that provides opportunities to integrate productivity and profitability with environmental stewardship, resulting in healthy and sustainable agricultural systems that can be passed on to future generations (USDA, 2011). Agroforestry practices are intentional combinations of trees with crops and/or livestock which involve intensive management of the interactions between the components as an integrated agro ecosystem. These four key characteristics – intentional, intensive, interactive and integrated – are the essence of agroforestry and are what distinguish it from other farming or forestry practices (Garrett, 2009). There are five common agroforestry practices: alley cropping, silvopasture, windbreaks, forested riparian buffers and forest farming (Gold et al., 2000). In alley cropping, trees are planted in single or multiple rows with agricultural or horticultural crops cultivated in the alleyways between rows. Silvopasture combines trees, forage and livestock into one integrated practice. Windbreaks are trees or shrubs planted as barriers that reduce wind speed and protect crops and livestock, or provide wildlife with a habitat. Riparian buffers are strips of permanent vegetation—trees, shrubs and grasses—planted between agricultural land and water resources to reduce run-off and non-point source pollution, stabilizing stream banks and protecting water quality. Forest farming consists of high-value, shade-tolerant crops cultivated under a forest overstory, modified to provide appropriate micro conditions. Many of these practices have multiple benefits, in terms of long-run income, stream, environmental, and/or scenic beauty (Gold et al., 2000).
The annual deforestation rate is about 11.3 million ha (Mastrantonio and Francis, 2004). People depend on forest and trees in the developing countries in many different ways (Dubois, 2003). Shifting
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cultivation is believed to have originated around 7000 BC, and this system is still common in some part of Asia, Latin America and Africa. It was predominantly sustainable in the past due to a low population pressure and the availability of large forest areas. Today, shifting cultivation contributes to excessive soil erosion and to land degradation (Steppler and Nair, 1987). It is estimated that 500 million farmers in developing countries still use shifting cultivation systems (Scherr, 1999). Most of them cultivate their land in marginal areas with poor soil quality, or on steep slopes. Shortening fallow periods and widespread burning to control weeds and pests further contribute to land degradation. Large areas have already been abandoned due to nutrient and organic matter depletion or invasive weeds (Scherr, 1999). Soil on steep slopes have commonly completely lost their productivity due to soil erosion. This causes serious local food shortages (Sah, 1996). The most common reason for declining productivity is water erosion. Other reasons are wind erosion, chemical soil degradation (loss of nutrients, salinization, pollution, and acidification) and physical soil degradation -loss of organic matter, water logging, and compaction saeling or crusting; (Scherr, 1999). The extent and effect of water erosion depend on the soil erosivity, which is the power of the rain to cause erosion; and erodibility, which is the ability of the soil to resist the rain (Hellin, 2006). Water erosion is problematic in the tropics because of heavier rain showers, as compared to other regions. Erosion is caused in the tropics due to uncovered soil, absence of windbreaks, lack of organic matter in the soil, and monocultures in farming (Glover, 2005).
Agricultural soils in the tropics, as also in the northern Guinea Savannah Zone, maintain their fertility due to tight cycling of nutrients between vegetation and soil; if this cycle is broken through forest destruction, nutrients are likely to be rapidly lost, which results in an impoverished soil (Hamilton and Bensted-Smith, 1989). Soil degradation is a major contributor to nutrient losses, because most of the
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scarce soil nutrients in the tropics are in the top 5-10 cm of the soil (Nkonya, Pender, Jagger, Kaizzi, and Ssali, 2004). The soils have a low water holding capacity due to low content of small soil particles. High temperatures favour rapid decomposition of organic residues; thus organic inputs are needed to avoid erosion. Steep lands are more sensitive to rapid soil degradation through runoff (Hellin, 2006). Therefore, carefully selected and managed trees can increase soil fertility and control erosion. Inappropriate agricultural and forestry production systems and population growth (animal and human) outstripping production lead to land degradation. This problem is severe in Kaduna State where the pressure of population is high, ecosystems are fragile and exploitation of forest cover is ruthless. The consequence is that wood and food supplies are dwindling. It is against this background that strengthening agroforestry practices using appropriate trees and shrubs would encourage rural dwellers in tackling environmental problems. 1.2 STATEMENT OF THE RESEARCH PROBLEM One of the areas in need of sustainable land management is that which will help to stabilize the physical environment and increase agricultural production through better use of local, natural and human resources. Land management plans must optimize the production of crops, fodder, tree and livestock species and maximize their returns without detriment to the environment. Soil fertility depletion on smallholder farms in Africa is already considered as a biophysical limiting factor affecting food production (Sanchez, Burersh and Leakey, 1997). This soil degradation affects more of the rural poor, because they are more dependent on annual agricultural crops that also cause more degradation than the other crops. They also rely more on common-property lands, which often are most seriously degraded. Land degradation has thus become a social, economic, political and technical problem (Hellin, 2006).
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During the past 30 years, agroforestry has progressed from being a traditional practice with great potential to the point where development experts agree that it provides an important science-based pathway for achieving important objectives in natural resource management and poverty alleviation. Despite its ubiquitous use by smallholder farm families, there is inadequate awareness about the poten-tial of agroforestry to benefit millions of households trapped in poverty. We need a global ‗agroforestry transformation‘ to mobilize science and resources to remove the socio-economic, ecological and political constraints to widespread application of agroforestry innovations, and thereby help attain the MDGs. (World Agroforestry Centre, 2005). Although, several studies have been carried out on the role of agroforestry practices in sustaining land management in different parts of the world and Nigeria in particular. For instance, Bugayong (2003) in a study, socioeconomic and environmental benefits of Agroforestry Practices in a community-based forest management site in the Philippines, observed that agroforestry practices play an important role as a strategy to uplift the socioeconomic conditions of the farmers while rehabilitating the degraded upland has made inroads in the project site.
Edmund (2005) in a study of agroforestry systems of West Africa in Nigeria, noted that Nigeria had experienced considerable depletion of their forested areas over years and this was attributed to a host of factors associated with anthropocentric activities in the use of land in the country. This problem is evident considering the growing incidence of land degradation emanating from sectors of the economy such as agriculture and the overdependence on oil revenues. Another important point that was noted by Edmund, (2005) is that the rural nature of the country and their dependence on subsistence farming and the ecological ramifications is quickening the gradual spread of agroforestry among communities in other to arrest the problems. In light of these findings, it is evident that analysis of agroforestry practices
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of West Africa with a focus on Nigeria stands as a valuable tool for decision makers and resource managers in gauging the problems posed by the developmental activities prompting loss of forest cover, rural poverty and environmental degradation in the country‘s ecological zones. Similarly, Amonum, Babalola and Agera (2009) in a study carried out on the concepts and practices of agroforestry systems in the southern part of Nigeria, showed that agroforestry had become recognized as a land use system which is capable of yielding both wood and food, while at the same time conserving and rehabilitating ecosystems. Ekpo and Asuquo (2012) in another study of adaptation tools of agroforestry practices to Climate Change Hazards in Itu LGA, Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria, revealed the following as potential role of Agroforestry to the farmers, reducing poverty through increased production of agroforestry products for home consumption and sale; contributing to food security by restoring farm soil fertility for food crops and production of fruits, nuts and edible oils; reducing deforestation and pressure on woodlands by providing fuel wood grown on farms; increasing diversity of on-farm tree crops and tree cover to buffer farmers against the effects of global climate change and improving nutrition to lessen the impacts of hunger and chronic illness associated with climate change. Alao and Shuaibu (2013) in their recent study on agroforestry practices and concepts in sustainable land use systems in Lafia Local Government Area, Nasarawa State, Nigeria, identified the inherent role of Agroforestry practices accruable to farmers which include: additional income, human nutrition, medicinal herbs, fuel, stakes and timber, shades for human and livestock, reduce weeding, wind break and soil improvement.
It is noted that the attempts being made under agroforestry practices are to optimize the use of land for agricultural production on a sustainable basis at the same time meeting other needs from forestry
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(Fagbemi, 2002). Various authors (Sanchez et al., 1997; Bugayong, 2003; Edmund, 2005, Hellin, 2006; Ekpo and Asuquo, 2012; Alao and Shuaibu, 2013) were of the view that successful agroforestry practices play crucial role to sustain land management in the following ways: Consistent restoration of the fertility status of the soil through the recycled litter deposition and nitrogen fixing mechanism of trees; A variety of products, firewood, poles, woodcraft, fodder, medicinal herbs and food for livestock and man respectively; Prevention of wind and water erosion by trees acting as wind break and intercepting the raindrop impact on the soil respectively; Improving the micro-climate effect of the immediate and adjourning environment; Restoration of water table to an absorbable level for crops use; increased income opportunities; increased economic stability; reduced cost for establishing plantation and increased ability to manage for sustained yield. Agricultural soils in the tropics, as also in the Northern Guinea savannah zone which Kaduna State is one of them, maintain their fertility due to tight cycling of nutrients between vegetation and soil; if this cycle is broken through forest destruction, nutrients are likely to be rapidly lost, which results in an impoverished soil (Hamilton and Bensted-Smith, 1989). Soil degradation is a major contributor to nutrient losses, because most of the scarce soil nutrients in the tropics are in the top 5-10 cm of the soil (Nkonya, Pender, Jagger, Kaizzi, and Ssali, 2004). The soils have a low water holding capacity due to a low content of small soil particles. High temperatures favour rapid decomposition of organic residues; thus organic inputs are needed to avoid erosion. Steep lands are more sensitive to rapid soil degradation through runoff (Hellin, 2006).
In all the previous researches reviewed, none has been carried out in Kaduna State which is the study area as well as failed to obtain the farmers‘ productivities to determine the sustainability of land management. Secondly, their findings were focused on only one Local Government Areas, while this
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study tries to investigate the variability of agroforestry practices across villages in three different Local Government areas in Kaduna State. Therefore, the variability exiting among vegetation zones, peculiar environmental problems, farming systems, land use patterns and tenurial rights call for a different Agroforestry system that would be adaptable and adoptable in each community. It is based on the forgoing that the present research intends to investigate and establish the peculiar roles of Agroforestry practices in sustaining land management in the rural areas of Kaduna State, Nigeria. In order to fill the existing gap in knowledge, the study intends to address the following research questions: i. What are the socio-economic characteristics of farmers practicing agroforestry in the study area? ii. What are the methods of land management practices in the study area? iii. What are the various types of agroforestry practice in the study area? iv. What is the justification for the roles of agroforestry practices with land management through farm productivity in the study area? v. What are the possible ways to improve agroforestry practices in the study area? 1.3 AIM AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY The aim of this study is to assess the role of agroforestry practices in sustainable land management in some rural areas of Kaduna state. However, the specific objectives of the study are to:
i. examine socio-economic characteristics of farmers that practice agroforestry in the study area;
ii. assess methods of land management practices in the study area;
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iii. characterize various types of agroforestry commonly practiced by the farmers in the study area; and
iv. examine the roles of agroforestry practices with land management through farm productivity in the study area;
1.4 HYPOTHESIS The following Null hypothesis guided the research work: There is no significant relationship between farmland size and total number of trees for sustainable land management in the farmland of respondents in the study area. 1.5 SCOPE OF THE STUDY The study focuses on the role of agroforestry practices in sustainable land management. Due to financial cost and time, this study will cover few villages in the selected three local governments namely Kubua, Zaria and Chikun LGAs in Kaduna State. In these local government areas, Kubua- Pambegwa, Anchua, Dutsen-wai, Gubuchi and Angwa Kwala, Zaria- Angwa Jebba, Shika Dam, Tsahoni, Nagoyi and Maleruwa, Chikun- Kujama, Sabon Gida Damishi and Buruku villages were used. These three local government areas represent the most populous registered farmers among the Twenty Three Local Government Areas in the state. Though, there are different land management methods commonly practiced by the rural farmers which include fallowing, crop rotation, application of organic manure, irrigation, mulching or cover crop, minimum tillage and agroforestry, the study intends to evaluate on the crucial role played by agroforestry, because it is the most effective and widely practiced one. The study also focuses on socioeconomic characteristics of the farmers in the study area, different types of agroforestry practices that aids sustainable land management, various land management practices, farm productivities of farmers for the last five years, from, 2009 to 2013.
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1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY As one of the studies which try to provide solution to the global issues of desertification, deforestation and land degradation, it intends to evaluate on the role of agroforestry practices as a management/development of resources to make for sustainable land management, it would be of interest to drawing out the role of farming practices that are capable of sustaining the farming land in the rural areas of Kaduna state. In this part of Nigeria, rainfall is very erratic and scarce and exploitation of natural resources is very high as a result of agricultural activities. If we are really concerned about the future generations, we must engage ourselves in deep thinking on how to manage our land and develop our resources for the good of all without degrading the land in particular and environment as a whole. The transformation of the study area into the effective and aggressive practices of agroforestry will go a long way in combatting the problems of desertified land, deforestation, erosion, pollution, wind damage, flood, land degradation and other environmental disasters. To understand and develop a sustainable model for environmental amelioration in the rural areas of Kaduna state, there is a need for rural farmers to understand the benefits derived from any farming operations practiced on the land which provides for their basic needs holistically. The knowledge gained from this study would also be useful to rural development planners and administrators in the future planning for sustainable land management and productive environment.

 

 

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