PHYSICAL SETTINGPost Comment PHYSICAL SETTING Nigeria
Location: Edo State lies roughly between lon gitude 6°04'E and 6°43'E and latitude 5° 44'N and 7°34'N of the equator. It is bounded in the south by Delta State, in the west by Ondo State, in the north by Kogi State and in the east by Kogi and Anambra states.
Relief and Drainage: The distinct relief regions in the state include: the swamps/creeks, the Esan plateau, Orle valley and the
University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin
dissected uplands of AkokoEdo Local Government Area.
There are six types of physical features which con stitute the landscape of Edo State. In the Benin lowlands is found a sandy coastal plain and alluvium clay with some hills in the east. Slopes are tilled in the southwest direction. Rivers Osse, Orihionmwon and lkpoba drain the area.
With the exception of River Osse that has a wide flood plain, the other rivers are characterised by steeply incised valleys in their upper courses; they become broad as they enter River Ethiope in Delta State.
The Esan Plateau ranges from 213 to 305m. It is characterised by sandstone hills, numerous dry valleys, steep slopes in the northern and southern portions but gentle slopes in the west. The Orle valley is developed on sandstone and runs in an east west direction with Rivers Owan and Orle as the main drainage outlets westwards and eastwards, respectively.
The dissected uplands of AkokoEdo on the other hand, range from 183m to 305m.
Outstanding features of the uplands include granite peaks, which rise above
610m and sandstone in the south. In addition, erosional and stable land sur
faces are predominant.
Soils: Soil type in the state is generally the redyellow kind of ferralsols. Variation in AkokoEdo consists of shallow/stony reddish clay at the feet of inselbergs in the higher sections, lateritic clay and fine grained to sandy soils in the upper slope/lateritic tablelands and ferruginous soils on the crystalline acid rocks of the basement complex.
In Orle valley, the soil is lateritic/gravelly sandy, while on the Esan Plateau,
the soil is either clayey sand or porous red sand. Soil type in the Benin low
land; ranges from loose poorly productive sand in the southeast to fertile clayey
soil in the northeast Close to the Niger, the Osse and the Benin Rivers are
alluvial and hydromorphic soils.
Vegetation: The natural vegetation in Edo State consists of rain forest in the Benin low lands Esan Plateau and savannah in the Orle valley /Akoko Edo uplands.
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Human interference has however, led to the presence of plantations for rubber
and oil palms as well as forest reserves Extensive exploitation of forest resources,
cattle grazing and persistent bush fires have combined to reduce areas of forest
vegetation to derived degraded savannah.
Ecological Problems: The main ecologica problems in Edo State are soil
erosion, scarcity water and outcrops of basement rocks. Erosion; acute in Auchi
and its environs as well as in Egor and lgueben on the Esan Plateau. Rainfall
and the removal of venetal cover are the main causes of the problem. Scarcity
of water is widespread during the dry season. The period of acute water shortage
. varies from three months in the Benin lowlands, about five months on the Esan
Plateau and sever months in the remaining northern parts of the state The depth
of the water table and the absence o ) large storage facilities are mainly responsible
fo / the prolonged period of water shortage on the Esar / Plateau.
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