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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Food production among the Ungwai of Nigeria: an ethnoarchaeological appraisal
Author:Ogundele, S. OluwoleISNI
Periodical:Research Review (ISSN 0855-4412)
Notes:biblio. refs.
Geographic terms:Nigeria
West Africa
food production
subsistence economy
agricultural history
Agriculture, Agronomy, Forestry
Ungwai (African people)
food crops
Abstract:Food production, or agriculture involving the use of simple implements like hoes and cutlasses, is the mainstay of the Ungwai economy. The Ungwai are an ethnic group located to the north of Minna, the capital town of Niger State of Nigeria. Field experience shows that the Ungwai agriculture or knowledge system is more than a mere economic affair. It is, indeed, a complex way of life central to the social, political, economic and ecological survival and integrity of the people. This facet of the Ungwai essence is anchored on the principles of cooperation and partnership. Crops grown include guinea-corn (Sorghum sp.), bulrush millet (Pennisetum sp.) and yams (Discorea sp.), while livestock such as cattle, goats and sheep are also kept. Droppings of these animals are used for enriching the soil. This is an effective indigenous soil maintenance strategy that is pivotal to abundant food production in the study area. Oral traditional, ethnographic and archaeological investigations carried out to date, show that the Ungwai farming practices can be stretched as far back in time as about the 18th century AD. Bibliogr., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]