Ethnobotanical study of medicinal plants used by local people in treatments of human and livestock ailments in Gasera Woreda, Bale zone, Oromia regional state, Ethiopia
Keywords:Ailments, Ethnobotany, Gasera district, Indigenous knowledge, Medicinal plants
An ethnobotanical study of indigenous knowledge on the uses of medicinal plant species was conducted from December 2017 to March 2018 in Gasera district of Bale Zone, Oromia Regional State. The objective of the study was to document indigenous knowledge of medicinal plants used to treat human and livestock ailments, threats and conservation status of medicinal plants before it is lost. Different ethnobotanical techniques such as semi-structured interviews, group discussion, field observations and guided field walk were used for gathering data and a total of 97 informants from 6 kebeles were involved in the study. A total of 121 medicinal plant species belonging to 113 genera and 60 families were documented. Among plant families, Lamiaceae was the most dominant plant family represented by 10 species, followed by Solanaceae represented by 8 species and Asteraceae represented by 7 species. Most of the species (78 species) were collected from the wild while (43 species) were collected from home-gardens. A total of 59 (48.76%) species were used for the treatment of human ailments, 34 species (28.1%) were used to treat both human and livestock ailments and 28 species (23.14%) were used to treat livestock ailments only. Herbs were the most used plants, accounting for 52.89% followed by shrubs (23.14%), trees (19.01%), climbers (3.31%) and epiphytes (1.65%). Human interference through habitat destruction for agricultural expansion, construction, firewood and other purposes were the major threats to medicinal plants in the study area. Awareness raising and community based participatory forest management program should be encouraged.
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