Still think fire isn’t a cause for concern in the conservation realm? Think again.
This is without National Park boundaries…and I can see EXACTLY where Kafue, Sioma Ngwezi and Luiwa Plains NPs are.
Note the western side burns earlier in the year than the eastern side. This can be attributed to rainfall and vegetation types, possibly even human population (most notably in the north-western part around the Bangweulu swamps and the lakes). Human population cannot be used to explain the fires in Kafue NP though…or the lack of such huge fires in the GMAs surrounding the Kafue NP. The Luangwa Valley is also easily found, with the river being quite an obvious black line (i.e. lack of burnt area), as is the upper Zambezi River.
This is with National Park boundaries.
This map, while not giving much information to the audience, shows the extent of burnt area in Africa south of the northern DRC border in 2017. Note the Miombo belt was significantly burnt and the absence of fire in the central African rain forest. Interestingly Malawi doesn’t show much burning, which, if we’re using human population or density as a predictor of fire, contradicts our general linking of population and fire prevalence.
I made these maps using NASA MODIS burned area data in QGIS.