Ethnobotanical knowledge of irula tribal community of walayar valley, Southern Western Ghats, India

Ethnobotanical knowledge of irula tribal community of walayar valley, Southern Western Ghats, India

Author: 
Venkatachalapathi, A., Tamilselvi, S.S. and Paulsamy, S.
Abstract: 

The medicinal plants have played important role in treating and preventing a variety of diseases throughout the world. India is one of the most medico-culturally diverse countries in the world where the medicinal plant sector is part of a time honoured tradition that is respected even today. Irula tribal community of Walayar valley, the Western Ghats, Tamil Nadu is still using mainly for their health care. However, no data were published in this line. Therefore, the present study was carried out to know the medicinal plants and the ailments for which they were being prescribed among the Irula tribal communities in Walayar valley. The ethnobotanical information was collected through interviews among local traditional healers in the study area. A total number of 146 species of plants distributed in 122 genera belonging to 58 families were identified as commonly used ethnomedicinal plants in the study. Interestingly, 26 new claims were also made in the present study. Fabaceae family was the dominant one contributed 15 species for medicinal uses. Among the life-forms, herbs were used largely (40.41% of species) for medicinal uses than the other life-forms. Decoction was the most common method of medicine preparation (63%) among Irulas of Walayar valley. A high number of 134 species were used for medicine preparation by multiple modes. Therefore, it is suggested to take-up pharmacological and phytochemical studies to evaluate the species to confirm the traditional knowledge of Irulas on medicinal plants.

Paper No: 
575