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The Role of Indigenous Ecological Knowledge in Managing Rangelands Sustainability in Northern Iran

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Type: Journal Article
Author: Ghorbani, Mehdi; Azarnivand, Hossein; Mehrabi, Ali Akbar; Jafari, Mohammad; Nayebi, Hooshang; Seeland, Klaus
Journal: Ecology and Society
Volume: 18
Date: 2013
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/8854
Sector: Grazing
Region: Middle East & South Asia
Subject(s): pastoralism
adaptive systems
indigenous knowledge
Abstract: "Pastoralists’ knowledge of adaptive rangeland management in Iran has long been only selectively analyzed and documented. This study attempts to rectify that by outlining the indigenous ecological knowledge of the pastoralists of Nariyan village in the Taleghan region of northern Iran, and by evaluating the influence of such knowledge on rangeland management. Local herd owners operate according to traditional herding practices; their knowledge of rangeland plants and principles of sustainable rangeland management is indigenous and is based on centuries of experience and observation. Their in-depth knowledge covers the medicinal properties of various local plant species and the palatability of the most salient forage species in terms of sustaining the sheep and goats that are their livelihood. This study investigates some of the traditional strategies of rangeland management used in the Taleghan region, the rationale and timing of livestock rotation in the rangelands, local landscape classification, and local know-how in animal husbandry, all of which are indispensable in contributing to the pastoralists’ survival and maintenance of the local environment."

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