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Medicinal plants used to treat livestock ailments in Ensaro District, North Shewa Zone, Amhara Regional State, Ethiopia

BMC Vet Res. 2022 Jun 22;18(1):235. doi: 10.1186/s12917-022-03320-6.


BACKGROUND: In Ethiopia, the majority of animal owners throughout the country depend on traditional healthcare practices to manage their animals’ health problems. This ethnoveterinary study was carried out in Ensaro District, North Showa Zone, and Amhara Region, Ethiopia, to identify medicinal plant species used by the local community to treat various livestock ailments.

METHODS: To collect ethnobotanical information, a total of 389 informants (283 men and 106 women) were selected. Among these 95 traditional medicine practitioners were purposely chosen, while the remaining 294 were selected through a systematic random sampling method. Ethnobotanical data were collected through semi-structured interviews, participant observation, guided filed walks and focus group discussions. The Informant Consensus Factor (ICF) and Fidelity Level (FL) values, preference, and direct matrix exercise ranking were determined using quantitative methods. Statistical tests were used to compare indigenous knowledge of medicinal plants among different informant groups.

RESULTS: A total of 44 ethnoveterinary medicinal plant species were collected and identified that were distributed across 43 genera and 28 families. The family Solanaceae stood first by contributing 4 species followed by Amaranthaceae, Asteraceae, Euphorbiaceae, Fabaceae and lamiaceae with 3 species each. Thirty- seven (88.09%) medicinal plants were collected from wild habitats, 6 medicinal plant species were collected from home garden. The most frequently used life form was shrubs (23 species, 54.76%) followed by herbs (13 species, 30.95%). The widely used parts of medicinal plants were leaves followed by roots. Prepared remedies were administered through drenching, dropping, smearing, eating, wrapping, fumigating and washing. There was significant difference in the indigenous knowledge of medicinal plants between gender, urban and rural people, general and key informants and among age groups.

CONCLUSION: Ensaro District is a relatively rich in diversity of ethnoveterinary medicinal plants together with a rich indigenous knowledge in the local communities to collect and effectively utilize for the management different livestock diseases. On the other hand, these days, agricultural expansion, fuel wood collection, cutting plants for fence, furniture and charcoal production are the major threatening factors of these plant resources. Thus, people of the study area must implement in situ and ex-situ conservation strategies to ensure sustainable utilization of these species.

PMID:35733153 | DOI:10.1186/s12917-022-03320-6

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