Wild edibles supplementing the food security of Guji Oromo semi-pastoralists, SuroBarguda District, Oromia, Ethiopia
In rural livelihoods, wild foods are important assets for complementing main foods, safeguarding food safety, and providing nutritional variation. These plants are used as dietary supplements and as a means of survival during times of food shortages. The objectives of this study were to record, collect, classify, and analyze the native uses and management of wild edible plants by the local semi-pastoralist people in SuroBarguda District, west Guji Zone, Ethiopia. Ethnobotanical data collection was conducted on various groups of 10 kebeles (the smallest administrative units of Ethiopia) households within the district. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews, guided field walks, field observations, and discussions. A total of 70 species of edible wild plants belonging to 50 genera and 36 angiosperm families were identified by local residents. Most (80%) of edible plants were consumed to compensate for regular food shortages during March- April (rainy season) when the stock of edible plants gradually decreased. The research region is endowed with a variety of wild edible plants that are used by the local people as food sources and for other reasons, helping them to address their problems with food insecurity. Unquestionably, the preservation of wild edible plants is important for ensuring household food security and dietary variety, both of which support the continued occurrence of biodiversity.
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