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PHYSICAL SETTING

Posted by on 2/4/2003 1:39:00 PM |

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KOGI STATE PHYSICAL SETTING PEOPLE, POPULATION AND RURAL-URBAN SETTLEMENT

PHYSICAL SETTING

Geology : Kogi state has two main rock types, namely, basement complex rocks of the Precambrian age in the western half of

Federal College of Education, Lokoja
Federal College of Education, Lokoja

the state and extending slightly eastwards beyond the lower Niger valley and the older sedimentary rocks in the eastern half.

The various sedimentary rock groups extend along the banks of Rivers Niger and Benue and southeastwards through Enugu and Anambra states, to join the Udi Plateau.

Relief and Drainage: The land rises from a about 300 metres along the NigerBenue conflute, to the heights of between 300 and 600 metres above sea level in the uplands. Agbaja Plateau, which ranges from 335 to 366 metres above sea level, and the much higher OkoroAgbo hills at Ogidi in ljumu LGA are some of the predominant to landforms of the state. The state is drained by the Niger and Benue rivers and their tributaries.

The confluence of the Niger and Benue rivers which could be viewed from the top of Mount Patti is located within the state. of The Benue river is navigable as far as Garua in the rainy season floods, but up to Makurdi in Benue State in the dry season (lloeje, 1979).

The Mabolo (Anambra) is the biggest river in Igalaland. Mabolo, Okura, Ubele and Ofu rivers run off the DekinaAnkpaOturkpo watershed. Osome ra Falls at Kilometre Four on OkeneAjaokuta Road, of Ofejiji Falls in OkuraOlafia and Egeneja Warm id Spring in Bassa Local Government Area are other drainage features (Benue State, 1985).

Bishop Samuel Ajayi Crowther's Tombstone, Lokoja
Bishop Samuel Ajayi Crowther's Tombstone, Lokoja

The bigger rivers have wide flood plains such as the portion of the lower Niger in Kogi state, which is more than 1,600 metres wide at Lokoja, while the in small streams have narrow valleys. The general rain is undulating and characterised by high hills, Jos plateaus and numerous inselbergs and elongated a ridges.

Climate: The state has an annual rainfall of between 1,100mm and 1,300mm. The rainy season lasts from April to October. The dry season, which lasts from November to March, is very dusty and of cold as a result of the northeasterly winds, which brings in the harmattan.

Soils: The flood plains of the Niger and Benue river valleys in Kogi State have the hydromorphic soils which contain a mixture of coarse alluvial and colluvial deposits (Areola, 1985). The alluvial soils along the valleys of the rivers are sandy, while the adjoining laterite soils are deeply weathered and grey or reddish in colour, sticky and permeable.

Vegetation: The rain forest belt (selva type) covers Dekina, Ofu, Ankpa, Olamaboro, Idah and Bassa local government areas with rich deciduous and occasional stunted trees including palms, Iroko, mahogany, akeeapple and other towering trees. Other LGAs are in the guinea savannah or parkland savannah belt with tall grasses and some trees.

Lord Lugard's Office, Lokoja
Lord Lugard's Office, Lokoja

These are green in the rainy season with fresh leaves and tall grasses, but the land is open during the dry season, showing charred trees and the remains of burnt grasses. The trees which grow in clusters are up to six metres tall, interspersed with grasses which grow up to about three metres.

These trees include locust bean, shea butter, oil bean and the isoberlinia trees. The different types of vegetation are, however, not in their natural luxuriant state owing to the careless human use of the forest and the resultant derived deciduous and savannah vegetations.

Ecological Problems: The ecological problems in the state are not necessarily peculiar to it. Some of these include leaching, erosion and general impoverishment of the soil. These problems are compounded by the annual bush burning of the savannah that further exposes the top soil to more erosion. Floods pose a problem on the flood plains during the rainy season, while aridity is a problem to several areas at short distances from the rivers during the dry season. Much damage is done to land and propertv as a result of these phenomena




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