Original Research

Savannas of southern Africa: attributes and use of some types along the Tropic of Capricorn

F. van der Meulen, H. A. M. J. van Gils
Bothalia | Vol 14, No 3/4 | a1227 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/abc.v14i3/4.1227 | © 1983 F. van der Meulen, H. A. M. J. van Gils | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 November 1983 | Published: 06 November 1983

About the author(s)

F. van der Meulen, Dune Water Works of The Hague, Netherlands
H. A. M. J. van Gils, International Institute for Aerial Survey and Earth Sciences., Netherlands

Full Text:



Two recent reconnaissance vegetation surveys of savanna in the Kalahari of Botswana and in the western Transvaal (RSA) carried out on a landscape basis are described. Attributes and utilization of four selected stations along a transect of about 1 000 km near the Tropic of Capricorn, with a climate changing eastward from arid to subhumid. are compared. The stations represent microphyllous /íajcïfl-savannas and mesophvllous Burkea-Ochna-Terminalia savannas on deep red sands, covering extensive parts in both survey areas. Land attributes used are physiography, macro-climate, vegetation (growth), large herbivores and land use practices.

The most striking difference between the four areas are the land use practices.

Some notes on the survey methodology are presented. The authors conclude that for small-scale vegetation-land use surveys the 'holistic' landscape approach can be recommended.


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