The population status of Osyris quadripartita (Africa sandalwood) is endangered in some places due to overexploitation for commercial values. The study aim was to assess distribution, association and structure at Arba Minch Zuria and Banna-Tsemay Districts, Southern Ethiopia. An inventory of species was carried out for determining the relative proportion of the selected woody species in communities. Systematic sampling was used to collect data from 62 quadrats (20 m x 20 m) established along transects. Woody species DBH of >2.5 cm and Height of >1.5 m were measured at each sampled plots. The result showed that 75 woody species from 29 families were recorded from both sites; Fabaceae (17%) and Combretaceae (12%) had the highest number of species. From five major plant community identified, Community type IV was highest in species richness while diversity and evenness were highest in community type III. Likewise, Osyris species highest richness was recorded in community IV. The stem density and DBH classes of the species showed the reversed J-shaped plots. But, basal area and regeneration status of the species showed Gaussian curve (Mayile site) and inverted J-shape (Shara site). The analysis results showed fair regeneration status, but high disturbance on matured trees. We conclude that current over harvesting of mature trees from parent-tree influenced the regeneration status of species. If this unsustainable harvesting by local people continues, the capacity of the species to maintain its wild population is significantly reduced. Therefore, management and conservation strategies that incorporates to supporting the livelihood peoples under such environment.
Keywords: African woodland, Community type, Regeneration status, Species richness