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Authors


Present address and correspondence: Department of Geography, The University of Western Australia, Nedlands, Western Australia 6907.

Abstract

Colophospermum mopane Kirk ex J.Leon (Fabaceae), commonly known as mopane, is an example of a tree species that is heavily browsed by elephants Loxodonta africana (Blumenbach) ( Ben-Shahar, 1993). Young mopane leaves are favoured by elephants because of their high crude protein content of 17.5% ( Styles & Skinner, 1997). Stems are also browsed on account of their mineral value, particularly of phosphate and calcium ( Van Wyk, 1994). Being semideciduous, the tendency for C. mopane to retain some of its leaves during the dry season is considered crucial to sustaining high elephant populations through this resource-deficient time of year.

Ancillary