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|Periodical article||Leiden University catalogue||WorldCat|
|Title:||Survey of edible mushrooms of the miombo woodlands through economic incentives in two villages of Tanzania|
Ngaga, Yonika M.
|Periodical:||Discovery and Innovation (ISSN 1015-079X)|
Traditional ecological knowledge
|Abstract:||A survey of edible mushrooms of the miombo woodlands through economic incentives was carried out in Tanangozi and Rungemba, Tanzania, from December 2003 to April 2004. As an incentive, 30 Tanzanian shillings were offered to each collector for each bowl of mushrooms (0.700kg) and 50 Tanzanian shillings for each single mushroom of Termitomyces letestui. Participation in the survey was open to all the villagers. The response was overwhelming. The number of collectors was 188 at the beginning of the study and rose to over 700 by the peak of the rainy season before dropping to 458 towards the end of the rainy season as the availability of mushrooms gradually decreased. While there was a good representation of both girls and boys among small children, adult mushroom collectors were dominated by women, who constituted 88.6 percent. Over 15 species of edible mushrooms occurring sequentially or in overlaps were harvested. Most of the mushrooms were ectomycorrhizal and occurred in the miombo woodlands. About 140 tons were harvested in a period of 4 months. The estimated monetary returns from these mushrooms was 140 million Tanzanian shillings at a price of 1000 Tanzanian shillings per kilo of fresh mushrooms. The survey results attest of the indigenous ecological knowledge of the rural community and justify the preservation of the miombo ecosystem on the grounds of its potential to contribute to rural poverty eradication. They indicate that the value of the miombo woodlands by far exceeds the value of the immediate alternative current land use, in this case arable agriculture. Bibliogr., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]|