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A survey of plants and plant products traditionally used in livestock health management in Buuri district, Meru County, Kenya.

Gakuubi MM, Wanzala W - J Ethnobiol Ethnomed (2012)

Bottom Line: Of these families, Fabaceae had the highest number of species (16.67%), followed by Solanaceae (12.5%), Asteraceae and Euphorbiacea (each comprising 8.33%), Lamiaceae (6.25%), Apocynaceae and Boraginaceae (each comprising 4.17%), while the rest of the 19 families, each was represented by a single plant species.The study showed that there was a rich knowledge and ethnopractices for traditional animal healthcare amongst the Ameru.This study therefore provides some groundwork for elucidating the efficacy of some of these plants, plant products and ethnopractices in managing livestock health as further research may lead to discovery of useful ethnopharmaceutical agents applicable in livestock industry.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Natural Sciences, Faculty of Science, The Catholic University of Eastern Africa, P.O. Box 62157-00200, Nairobi, Kenya.

ABSTRACT

Background: Up till now, nomadic communities in Africa have been the primary focus of ethnoveterinary research. Although mainly arable and/or mixed arable/pastoral farmers, Ameru of central Kenya are known to have a rich history of ethnoveterinary knowledge. Their collective and accumulative ethnoveterinary knowledge (EVK) is likely to be just as rich and worth documenting. The aim of the study was to document and analyse the ethnoveterinary knowledge of the Ameru.

Methods: Non-alienating, dialogic, participatory action research (PAR) and participatory rural appraisal (PRA) approaches involving 21 women and men aged between 50 and 79 years old were utilized. A combination of snowball and purposive sampling methods were used to select 21 key respondents. The methods comprised a set of triangulation approach needed in EVK for non-experimental validation of ethnoknowledge of the Ameru.

Results: A total of 48 plant species distributed in 26 families were documented with details of diseases/ill-health conditions, parts of plants used and form of preparation and administration methods applied to different animal groups. Of these families, Fabaceae had the highest number of species (16.67%), followed by Solanaceae (12.5%), Asteraceae and Euphorbiacea (each comprising 8.33%), Lamiaceae (6.25%), Apocynaceae and Boraginaceae (each comprising 4.17%), while the rest of the 19 families, each was represented by a single plant species. About 30 livestock diseases/ill-health conditions were described, each treated by at least one of the 48 plant species. Most prevalent diseases/ill-health conditions included: - anaplasmosis, diarrhea, East Coast fever, pneumonia, helminthiasis, general weakness and skin diseases involving wounds caused by ectoparasites.

Conclusion: The study showed that there was a rich knowledge and ethnopractices for traditional animal healthcare amongst the Ameru. This study therefore provides some groundwork for elucidating the efficacy of some of these plants, plant products and ethnopractices in managing livestock health as further research may lead to discovery of useful ethnopharmaceutical agents applicable in livestock industry.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Map of the study area showing the larger Meru region of Kenya, the Buuri district and the neighboring districts.
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Figure 1: Map of the study area showing the larger Meru region of Kenya, the Buuri district and the neighboring districts.

Mentions: The name “Meru” refers to both the people and geographical location. The Ameru are part of the Bantu people of East Africa living on the fertile agricultural north and eastern slopes of Mount Kenya within the geographical coordinates of 0° 30' 0" North, 37° 39' 0" East and an altitude of 5,199 m asl. The Meru region constitutes a large area stretching northward to the volcanic Nyambene Hills and southward to the Thuchi River (Figure1), with the highest point being the summit of Mount Kenya, which greatly influences climate of the area. The rainfall pattern is bimodal with long periods of rain occurring from mid-March to May and short periods occurring from October to December. The mean annual rainfall is about 1,300 mm per year, ranging from 380 mm per year in lowland areas (which includes much of Buuri district that lies on the leeward side of Mount Kenya) to 2,500 mm per year on the north and eastern slopes of Mount Kenya. The climate of Meru region comprises cloudy days with annual temperatures ranging from 10°C around the mountain to 30°C in the lower parts of Meru, relative humidity of 68% and wind of NE at 4 mph.


A survey of plants and plant products traditionally used in livestock health management in Buuri district, Meru County, Kenya.

Gakuubi MM, Wanzala W - J Ethnobiol Ethnomed (2012)

Map of the study area showing the larger Meru region of Kenya, the Buuri district and the neighboring districts.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3539861&req=5

Figure 1: Map of the study area showing the larger Meru region of Kenya, the Buuri district and the neighboring districts.
Mentions: The name “Meru” refers to both the people and geographical location. The Ameru are part of the Bantu people of East Africa living on the fertile agricultural north and eastern slopes of Mount Kenya within the geographical coordinates of 0° 30' 0" North, 37° 39' 0" East and an altitude of 5,199 m asl. The Meru region constitutes a large area stretching northward to the volcanic Nyambene Hills and southward to the Thuchi River (Figure1), with the highest point being the summit of Mount Kenya, which greatly influences climate of the area. The rainfall pattern is bimodal with long periods of rain occurring from mid-March to May and short periods occurring from October to December. The mean annual rainfall is about 1,300 mm per year, ranging from 380 mm per year in lowland areas (which includes much of Buuri district that lies on the leeward side of Mount Kenya) to 2,500 mm per year on the north and eastern slopes of Mount Kenya. The climate of Meru region comprises cloudy days with annual temperatures ranging from 10°C around the mountain to 30°C in the lower parts of Meru, relative humidity of 68% and wind of NE at 4 mph.

Bottom Line: Of these families, Fabaceae had the highest number of species (16.67%), followed by Solanaceae (12.5%), Asteraceae and Euphorbiacea (each comprising 8.33%), Lamiaceae (6.25%), Apocynaceae and Boraginaceae (each comprising 4.17%), while the rest of the 19 families, each was represented by a single plant species.The study showed that there was a rich knowledge and ethnopractices for traditional animal healthcare amongst the Ameru.This study therefore provides some groundwork for elucidating the efficacy of some of these plants, plant products and ethnopractices in managing livestock health as further research may lead to discovery of useful ethnopharmaceutical agents applicable in livestock industry.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Natural Sciences, Faculty of Science, The Catholic University of Eastern Africa, P.O. Box 62157-00200, Nairobi, Kenya.

ABSTRACT

Background: Up till now, nomadic communities in Africa have been the primary focus of ethnoveterinary research. Although mainly arable and/or mixed arable/pastoral farmers, Ameru of central Kenya are known to have a rich history of ethnoveterinary knowledge. Their collective and accumulative ethnoveterinary knowledge (EVK) is likely to be just as rich and worth documenting. The aim of the study was to document and analyse the ethnoveterinary knowledge of the Ameru.

Methods: Non-alienating, dialogic, participatory action research (PAR) and participatory rural appraisal (PRA) approaches involving 21 women and men aged between 50 and 79 years old were utilized. A combination of snowball and purposive sampling methods were used to select 21 key respondents. The methods comprised a set of triangulation approach needed in EVK for non-experimental validation of ethnoknowledge of the Ameru.

Results: A total of 48 plant species distributed in 26 families were documented with details of diseases/ill-health conditions, parts of plants used and form of preparation and administration methods applied to different animal groups. Of these families, Fabaceae had the highest number of species (16.67%), followed by Solanaceae (12.5%), Asteraceae and Euphorbiacea (each comprising 8.33%), Lamiaceae (6.25%), Apocynaceae and Boraginaceae (each comprising 4.17%), while the rest of the 19 families, each was represented by a single plant species. About 30 livestock diseases/ill-health conditions were described, each treated by at least one of the 48 plant species. Most prevalent diseases/ill-health conditions included: - anaplasmosis, diarrhea, East Coast fever, pneumonia, helminthiasis, general weakness and skin diseases involving wounds caused by ectoparasites.

Conclusion: The study showed that there was a rich knowledge and ethnopractices for traditional animal healthcare amongst the Ameru. This study therefore provides some groundwork for elucidating the efficacy of some of these plants, plant products and ethnopractices in managing livestock health as further research may lead to discovery of useful ethnopharmaceutical agents applicable in livestock industry.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus