Bioclimatology and Biogeography of Africa by Henry N. Houérou

By Henry N. Houérou

Overlaying a space of over a hundred thirty million km2 spanning the Mediterranean, equator and tropics, the African continent incorporates a astounding geographic range. therefore, it truly is characterized via super variable climatic, edaphic and ecological stipulations, linked to a variety of traditional plants and natural world, in addition to human inhabitants density, vegetation and farm animals. during this publication, Henry Le Hou?rou offers his bioclimatic and biogeographic class of Africa. The large facts give you the foundation for comparisons among numerous African areas, and with areas on different continents similar to Latin the US or the Indian subcontinent. the implications represent a rational foundation for nationwide, nearby and sub-regional rural improvement making plans, and for agricultural learn facing facets equivalent to plant and animal introductions, the extrapolation or interpolation of experimental or developmental findings, and ecosystems dynamics. attainable difficulties of functions also are tested.

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15 Thermal neutrality and human comfort as a function of temperature and air humidity (Canha da Piedade 1986) Fig. 16 Comfort diagram combining wind velocity, temperature and clothing, for a person sitting in the sunshine (Kristensen and Esben 1986) low rains in the Gulf and higher than normal rains in the Sudan and the Sahel ecozones. The annual SST amplitude was around 6°C, whereas the interannual range of anomalies was 2–3°C between 1854 and 1990 (Lamb 1978; Hastenrath and Lamb 40 1 Introduction 1600 1400 Annual Rainfall (mm) 1200 1000 800 600 400 200 0 0 30 60 90 120 150 180 210 240 270 300 330 360 390 Length of the rainy period (days) Fig.

35 ETo = 400 mm Elev. 0 °C ETo = 1,143 mm b Toliara (Madagascar) Arid tropical lowland agro-bioclimate, with very warm winters Lat. 23°23′S P = 275 mm 2t = 578 mm Long. 35 ETo = 540 mm Elev. 0 °C ETo = 1,544 mm c Windhoek (Namibia) Arid tropical midland agro-bioclimate with mild/warm winters Lat. 22°34′S P = 361 mm 2t = 456 mm Long. 35 ETo = 459 mm Elev. 0 °C ETo = 1,311 mm d Gaborone (Botswana) Semi-arid tropical highland agro-bioclimate with temperate winters Lat. 24°40′S P = 520 mm 2t = 480 mm Long.

96 (Le Houérou 1999a). In theory, the variability index is more accurate in low-rainfall areas, as it does not depend on the shape of the distribution and its skewness, in contrast to the coefficient of variation. In practical terms, however, the difference is negligible for our purpose. Rainfall variability is a significant parameter but most often overlooked. It becomes more important as the mean annual rainfall decreases. e. those occurring 4 years in 5, on which agricultural development planning should be based (Hargreaves 1975a, b; Dancette 1979; Virmany et al.

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