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Research Articles

Conservation of crop wild relatives: a Sri Lankan experience in community participation

Authors:

M. Wijeratne ,

University of Ruhuna, LK
About M.
Department of Agricultural Economics & Extension, Faculty of Agriculture
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K. H. K. L. Piyasiri

University of Ruhuna, LK
About K. H. K. L.
Department of Agricultural Economics & Extension, Faculty of Agriculture
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Abstract

Sri Lanka is considered as a hotspot of biodiversity as most its forests are rich in different Crop Wild Relatives (CWR). CWR include wild relatives of crop ancestors and other species. In fact, they are a critical source of genes for resistance to diseases, pests and stresses such as droughts, floods and temperatures. However, most of the CWR are increasingly at a risk. This investigation focused on one important wild plant species- Kapuru Kurundu (Cinnomomum capparu-coronde Blume). And the main objective is to establish conservation policies while integrating community’s participation. The investigation has been carried out in the surrounding villages of Kanneliya forest reserve located in the Southern Province Sri Lanka. A series of case studies were conducted with the farmers of surrounding villages. The PRA (Participatory Rural Appraisal) tools were employed and informal discussions were also conducted. Observation visits were made to demarcate the existing plants. Results reveal that community is used to extract the plant, especially as an indigenous medicine directly for toothache, ointments, bronchitis, rheumatism, snake bites, breakages and fractures. In fact, bark oil contained eugenol and root oil was rich in camphor. Further, results disclose that certain illegal groups extract the plant and trade for commercial purposes. This warranted an urgent programme for conservation. Hence, in-situ and ex-situ conservations were started in Kanneliya forest reserve. Moreover, community conservation groups were strengthened in the surrounding villages to mitigate illegal removal, and conserve Kapuru Kurundu plant.
How to Cite: Wijeratne, M. & Piyasiri, K.H.K.L., (2016). Conservation of crop wild relatives: a Sri Lankan experience in community participation. Tropical Agricultural Research and Extension. 18(2), pp.87–93. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/tare.v18i2.5328
Published on 24 Nov 2016.
Peer Reviewed

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