Vol. 107 No. 1 (2013)
Research Papers

Soil mapping and classification: a case study in the Tigray Region, Ethiopia

Ahmed Harb Rabia
1 University of Damanhour, Faculty of agriculture, department of natural resources and agricultural engineering. Damanhour, Egypt.
Rasha Ramzy Afifi
2 National Research centre.Department of Plant Nutrition. P.O. Box 12622, El-Tahreer Street , Dokki, Egypt.
Aweke Mulualem Gelaw
3 Department of Land Resources Management and Environmental Protection, Mekelle University, P.O.Box: 231. Mekelle, Ethiopia.
Simone Bianchi
4 29th Course Professional Master " Geomatics and Natural Resources Evaluation" Istituto Agronomico per L’oltremare, Firenze, Italy.
Hernán Figueredo
5 Ministry of Development Planning, Vice-Ministry of Planning and Coordination, General Direction of Territorial Planning - La Paz, Bolivia.
Tran Lan Huong
6 Asian Managament and Development Institute - Hanoi, Viet Nam.
Amado Adalberto Lopez
7 Faculty of Agronomy, San Carlos University, Guatemala.
Sabil Damiao Mandala
8 Pedagogical University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography, Maputo, Mozambique.
Erica Matta
9 Institute for Electromagnetic Sensing of the Environment (IREA-CNR), Via Bassini 15, 20133 Milano, Italy.
Marta Ronchi
4 29th Course Professional Master " Geomatics and Natural Resources Evaluation" Istituto Agronomico per L’oltremare, Firenze, Italy.
Hishe Woldegiorgis Solomon
10 Mekelle University, college of Social Science and Languages, Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, P.O.Box: 231. Mekelle, Ethiopia.
Alfred Kouly Tine
11 Institut National de Pédologie du Sénégal, Division Cartographie et Cadastre Agricole. Routes des Pères Maristes BP 10709 Dakar, Sénégal.
Mohamed Saleh Youssef
12 Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation, Corniche El-Nile, Imbaba, Postal Code: 12666, Giza, Egypt.
Maria Gabriela Gutierrez
4 29th Course Professional Master " Geomatics and Natural Resources Evaluation" Istituto Agronomico per L’oltremare, Firenze, Italy.
Muktar Mohammed Yusuf
13 Haramaya University, College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, School of Natural Resources Management and Environmental Sciences, P.O. Box,138, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia.
Valeria Alessandro
14 Istituto Agronomico per l'Oltremare, Via A. Cocchi 4 Firenze, Italy.
Published June 21, 2013
How to Cite
Rabia, A. H., Afifi, R. R., Gelaw, A. M., Bianchi, S., Figueredo, H., Huong, T. L., Lopez, A. A., Mandala, S. D., Matta, E., Ronchi, M., Solomon, H. W., Tine, A. K., Youssef, M. S., Gutierrez, M. G., Yusuf, M. M., & Alessandro, V. (2013). Soil mapping and classification: a case study in the Tigray Region, Ethiopia. Journal of Agriculture and Environment for International Development (JAEID), 107(1), 73-99. https://doi.org/10.12895/jaeid.20131.81

Abstract

Soil map is one of the basic tools in any agricultural development planning and generating a digital one is even more effective and more productive for natural resources evaluation. Moreover, remote sensing and GIS have added to soil classification different concept and enforcement. The study aim was to produce digital soil maps for the study area following different classification systems (ST and WRB) and to define the spatial distribution and characteristics all the soil classes in the study area, which will be indispensable for future development planning. This work has been done as a part of the 29th Course Professional Master in IAO institution, Florence, Italy. The study area was Kilte Awulaelo district in Tigray region, Ethiopia, Which is characterized by different topographies and geomorphologies with different agro ecological conditions. Eleven main soil groups and sixty soil types were identified in the study area. The main soil groups are: Leptosols, Vertisols, Fluvisols, Stagnosols, Kastanozems, Phaeozems, Calcisols, Luvisols, Arenosols, Cambisols and Regosols.  Regosols and Cambisols are the dominant soils in the study area which is characteristic soils of rainfed agriculture and land affected by erosion. Using spatial distribution map of each soil group was very helpful to connect soil characteristics with soil forming factors. Lastly, GIS and remote sensing were very effective tools in this study and gave higher value for the final study results.