Butterfly Diversity: An Indicator for Environmental Health within Tarkwa Gold Mine, Ghana

  •  Rosina Kyerematen    
  •  Samuel Adu-Acheampong    
  •  Daniel Acquah-Lamptey    
  •  Roger Sigismund Anderson    
  •  Erasmus H. Owusu    
  •  Jones Mantey    


Many human societies, rely on proceeds from mining of metals and fossil fuels for income generation as well as resource supplies from biodiversity. However, these mining activities are in conflict with and threaten the sustainable utilisation and conservation of biodiversity. We used butterflies, a known bioindicator species as surrogates to measure the level of change in vegetation within Tarkwa Gold Mines (TGM) in Ghana. Butterfly assemblages were sampled within the concession and characterised in terms of diversity indices and vegetation type. Transect counts, aerial netting and charaxes trapping were employed to assess butterfly assemblages. Results showed that although there were high records of degraded forest and savanna indicator species, the fairly high presence of deep forested species also shows that some forested areas within the concession are still in good condition. Recommendations are made to maintain forest blocks to serve as refugia for butterflies and urge management to institute measures to restore old and abandoned mined sites. We also recommend policy makers to enact laws that will ensure that, mining organisations lay down plans for sustainable mine operations and biodiversity conservation before being granted licenses to operate in Ghana.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1927-0488
  • ISSN(Online): 1927-0496
  • Started: 2011
  • Frequency: semiannual

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