Forests in Ethiopia may have at one time covered as much as 35% of the country but this has since been reduced to around 2.3%. 58 Forest Priority Areas covering 2.3 million hectares have been designated to conserve the forests of the country. Despite this official protection a multitude of intertwining factors are contributing to deforestation of some 163,000 hectares annually.
The future of the Afro-montane forests of Ethiopia is inextricably linked to the fate of the mountain nyala and without safari hunting that species prospects look grim. For wildlife conservation to work in Africa a balanced approach is needed which takes into account both economic factors and the socio-cultural needs of the indigenous people.