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Journal Cover Ethnobiology and Conservation
  [2 followers]  Follow
  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
   ISSN (Print) 2238-4782 - ISSN (Online) 2238-4782
   Published by Universidade Estadual da ParaĆ­ba Homepage  [2 journals]
  • Fifty years of environmental changes of the Amacuzac riparian ecosystem: a
           social perceptions and historical ecology approach

    • Authors: Angel E. Eufracio-Torres, Elisabet V. Wehncke, Xavier Lopez-Medellin, Belinda Maldonado-Almanza
      Abstract: Critical aspects of hydrological science need to include historical perspectives about land and water use, and to understand the kind of knowledge policy­makers and society require, so that this expertise can be translated into actions directed to water management challenges. We combined environmental perceptions with historical ecology techniques to understand the past and present relationships between people and the riparian environment, and to highlight the overriding influences of historic land­use changes in the region. We analyzed the perceptions of elderly stakeholders who have lived for >50 years in ten localities established inside and outside a protected area along the Amacuzac, one of the largest rivers in Morelos, Mexico. The river was and still is an important part of community life, in spite of its present poor condition. Perspectives of elders living inside the protected area were mostly related to conservation aspects of ecosystem functioning, impact on vegetation, and water problems related to land use. The loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services were recognized as the leading cause ofthe loss of ecosystem products and of their commercialization, as well as other changes in local economies. We conclude that effectively protected areas can improve the biological quality of watercourses if a decidedly more conservationist focus is placed upon streams and the surrounding territory.
      PubDate: 2016-11-22
      Issue No: Vol. 5 (2016)
  • "They call me a woodsman": cognitive and social aspects on the
           relationships between woodsmen and forest researchers

    • Authors: Carolina Alencar Dantas, Rafael Ricardo Vasconcelos da Silva, Pedro Castelo Branco Silveira, Ana Carolina Borges Lins Silva, Ângelo Giuseppe Chaves Alves
      Abstract: Woodsmen or "mateiros" are people who are commonly hired or contracted to work as special local collaborators, often guiding scientists inside the forest, providing local names of plants and other useful information. We interviewed forest researchers and woodsmen to unveil the process of forest science production in the coastal zone of Northeast Brazil. The concept of network is used as a basis for discussing the connections involving forest knowledge production in and outside scientific academic environments. We presumed that the so-called social invisibility of woodsmen would be a consequence of the asymmetric relationship they have with formal researchers. Information from the interviews was analyzed by means of thematic coding through the content-analysis technique. We found that the "woodsman" category is mainly an academic construct; a designation attributed generally in an unilateral way by scientific professionals towards some people who work as local experts on plants and other components of forest ecosystems. All of the woodsmen we found were men with a low degree of formal education. Researchers tended to recognize woodsmen as bearers of some indispensable information, although treated as a subordinate and local source of knowledge. Although most researchers realized that woodsmen are key collaborators, most of them never referred explicitly to the aid received from these partners. People from both groups agreed that woodsmen are more and more difficult to find. We suggest that forest researchers dealing with woodsmen should develop a more critical vision on the social relationships in which they are involved while doing fieldwork.
      PubDate: 2016-08-26
      Issue No: Vol. 5 (2016)
  • Trophic relationships between people and resources: fish consumption in an
           artisanal fishers neighborhood in Southern Brazil

    • Authors: Maísa Sousa Castro, Ivan Machado Martins, Natalia Hanazaki
      Abstract: The study of dietary consumption is important to understanding the relationship between eating habits and natural resources, which may reflect adjustments and adaptations demanded by local environmental changes. This study aimed to understand the trophic relationships between the local families’ diets and the ichthyofauna present in an urban neighborhood of artisanal fishers in southern Brazil (Tijucas, Santa Catarina). Data were collected through semi-structured interviews in 88 households who reported the consumption of 62 types of fish, where the most consumed were the mullet (Mugil spp.) and croaker (Micropogonias furnieri). Fish is still an important source of animal protein for local families. Preferences and aversions observed can be explained by the relationship between environmental factors and cultural aspects that relate to the economic and social context of the community. In the last decade fish consumption was affected by local immigration and by contextual changes affecting local fisheries.

      PubDate: 2016-08-22
      Issue No: Vol. 5 (2016)
  • Homegardens in a micro-regional scale: contributions to agrobiodiversity
           conservation in an urban-rural context

    • Authors: Nivaldo Peroni, Natalia Hanazaki, Alpina Begossi, Elaine Zuchiwschi, Victoria Duarte Lacerda, Tatiana Mota Miranda
      Abstract: Homegardens are conservation units for native plants and reservoirs of exotic species from different origins. We analysed the species composition and diversity of edible plants on three groups of homegardens in a gradient from urban to rural situations, but under the same historical and cultural contexts, and verified how these homegardens can favour the conservation of plants from different origins. The size of each homegarden was measured and complete in- ventories were carried out to assess the total edible plant diversity. Plants were collected for taxonomic identification or identified in the field, and were classified for their biogeographic origin. We compared species richness and diversity among the groups of homegardens (urban, periurban and rural), and analysed their floristic similarity. A total of 109 homegardens were studied (39 urban, 60 periurban, and 10 rural). We registered a total of 101 species, 45 botanical families and 41 varieties, with 71% of the species occurring in less than 10% of the homegardens. Rural homegardens were more diverse than periurban ones, and periurban and urban homegardens are equally diverse. We found a low but significant correlation between floristic similarity and geographic distance to the urban area. Most plants were introduced, with different origins, especially from South America Lowlands. A significant amount of plants were ex- changed between relatives and neighbours. These homegardens can be considered agrobiodiversity reservoirs in a micro-regional scale, being important areas for in situ and on farm conservation and including native and exotic plants.
      PubDate: 2016-08-22
      Issue No: Vol. 5 (2016)
  • Game mammals of the Caatinga biome

    • Authors: Rômulo Romeu Nóbrega Alves, Anderson Feijó, Raynner Rilke Duarte Barboza, Wedson Medeiros Silva Souto, Hugo Fernandes-Ferreira, Pedro Cordeiro-Estrela, Alfredo Langguth
      Abstract: Mammals stand out among the main game animals of the world, being exploited by human beings for different ends, and being important for the subsistence of several communities. In semiarid environments, as in the Brazilian Caatinga biome, wild mammals have been exploited by the local human population, including endangered species. In this scenario, beyond biological research of the exploited animals, ethnozoological studies are important for supporting plans for the sustainable management and conservation strategies for the mammalian fauna of the semiarid landscape. This study aims to contribute to new research into the ethnomammalogy of this specific region. It provides a catalogue of the mammals and their ethnozoological importance, including a brief characterization of game mammals of the morphoclimatic domain of the Caatinga. The results show that at least 41 species of wild mammals interact with the population that lives in the semiarid region, as sources of products that can be used for the following purposes: food (31 species), medicinal (38 species), ornamental or decorative purposes (23 species), in magical/religious practices (31 species), and as pets (24 species). Twenty-five species are hunted because of concerns over personal safety or predation on livestock and pests. Among the recorded mammals, 13 (31.7%) are listed in some threatened category (Critically endangered, Endangered or Vulnerable). Hunting is one of the main factors contributing to this situation, which provides evidence that conservation strategies should consider the associated human needs, integrating cultural aspects of the local populations, and ecological aspects associated with the biodiversity of the region.
      PubDate: 2016-07-27
      Issue No: Vol. 5 (2016)
  • Hunting management: the need to adjust predictive models to field

    • Authors: Francois Renoux, Benoit de thoisy
      Abstract: Wild meat is a major protein supply for numerous traditional communities worldwide, but impacts ecological processes and consequently challenges the relevance and suitability of adequate monitoring of the sustainability of harvests. In this study we discuss the classic models of theoretical “maximum sustainable offtake” and propose new considerations on sustainable harvest thresholds. The study focuses on French Guiana, northern Amazonia, on four sites harvested by three communities (Amerindian, Creole, and Hmong), mainly for subsistence purposes. We explored how factors related to the number of hunters, the harvested areas, and the surface area hunted, and measured how fauna abundance generates uncertainties on models and increases the errors on sustainable thresholds. Biased or incomplete ethnologic surveys, as well as local and temporal variations in game species density could lead to considerable underestimation of harvests. We proposed a set of corrections that, once applied to theinput variables of the offtake model, could limit the risk of erroneous assessment of sustainability thresholds.
      PubDate: 2016-06-28
      Issue No: Vol. 5 (2016)
  • Healing faith: knowledge, learning and social relationships of healers
           from Araripe plateau, Brazil

    • Authors: Sofia Zank, Natalia Hanazaki
      Abstract: We investigated the practice of healing in three rural communities in Brazil (Ceará) to understand the diseases that are treated, the plants known and used, the ways in which knowledge of the blessing practices and medicinal plants is gained, and the relationships among the healers. We interviewed 41 healers, who treat approximately 20 diseases with blessings and know several species of medicinal plants. Six plants are most often associated with blessing. The transmission of knowledge occurs mainly through people who have kinship. The popularity of a healer was not influenced by the number of therapeutic plants known or the number of diseases treated through blessing. In two communities, the best-known healers are also the most sought after by other healers for the exchange of information and blessings. The results of this study can assist in the establishment of public actions aimed at the enhancement and the recognition of blessing practices.
      PubDate: 2016-06-28
      Issue No: Vol. 5 (2016)
  • Are the evolutionary implications of vertical transmission of knowledge

    • Authors: Gustavo Taboada Soldati, Ulysses Paulino Albuquerque
      Abstract: The evolution of cultural systems, or the rate of change in the frequency of traits, is determined by the routes of knowledge transmission, among other factors. According to mathematical models, vertical transmission is the more conservative route, and it promotes high variation among individuals of a population, acts as a barrier to the diffusion of innovations, and promotes slow cultural evolution. However, the history of transmission of the same cultural traits beyond "model-apprentice" pairs indicates that vertical transmission can produce different effects on a cultural system. In the present paper we formalize the hypothesis that vertical transmission has diffusive effects and results in a fast change cultural evolution. If the hypothesis proposed here is confirmed, the theoretical reformulation and relativization of empirical data collected in previous studies will be required.
      PubDate: 2016-06-28
      Issue No: Vol. 5 (2016)
School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences
Heriot-Watt University
Edinburgh, EH14 4AS, UK
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Fax: +00 44 (0)131 4513327
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