International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

TOWARDS A MODEL EXPLAINING CHANGE IN AGRICULTURAL LAND USE PATTERNS IN UTE DISTRICTS OF VANDEIKYA LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, BENUE STATE, NIGERIA
D. S. Ortserga

Abstract
This study attempts to explain change in patterns of agricultural land use in Ute Districts of Vandeikya Local Government Area of Benue State, Nigeria from 1920 to 2009, using a multiple factors approach. Data was obtained from archives, aerial photographs, interviews, field measurements and field surveys. Principal component analysis was used to determine the main factors contributing to the change. The study indicates that size of farm plots, cycle of crop rotation and fallow period have changed during the period covered by the study. These changes, which are all towards land use intensification, are mainly explained by transformation of relations of production, improved standard of living, behavio-economic reorientation, technology, population, future security, land tenure change, liberalised access to personal income and social responsibility. The nine factors have accounted for 72.15% of variance in the data set used in the study. The study concludes that multiple factors model better explains agricultural land use change in the area than single factor models. The study recommends facilitation of commercial process through rural transport development, reform of land use intensification process and integrated role of government to sustain land use evolution in the area.

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