New Perspectives in Science Education

Edition 12

Accepted Abstracts

Distribution and Ethnoecological Assessment of Raphia Hookeri g. Mann & h. Wendl, Raphia Vinifera p. Beauv and Raphia Sudanica a. Chev in Benin (West Africa)

Bouraïma Raoudath A. O., Laboratory of Applied Ecology, University of Abomey-Calavi (Benin)

Abstract

The economic potential of the non timber wood resources currently arouses an increasing interest. ¶With the number of these resources, Raphia’s palm trees are known to be very much used for the subsistence by the local populations. ¶Nevertheless, the geographical distribution of these species and their uses according to ecological conditions’ is not enough well documented. So they are neglected and underutilized by population. Presence data of Raphia’s species was used as well as the current and future climatic data (2050) under the MaxEnt tool to study the effect of the ecological conditions on the geographical distribution of Raphia’s species through the three chorologic areas of Benin. In addition, endogenous knowledge and the ethnobotanic quantitative tools were used to study the diversity and the utilization factor kind of these species. ¶A logistic binary regression was made to determine the socio-economic factors determining the uses of these species. ¶The current potential distribution of the species is limited to the Sudanian and Sudano-Guinean areas for Raphia sudanica and the Guinean for Raphia hookeri and Raphia vinifera.¶ The populations assert to Raphia were used according to the species currently available in their each climatic zone. ¶A significant difference was observed between the categories of use of the species and the socio-economic factors of the surveyed people. ¶In the whole, 881 owners (gatherers and transformer) were listed. ¶In Sudanian region, relatively, only transformers are found. In this region, the ¶ gender and the religion determine the use of the species and the primary category of use is the craft industry. ¶The bodies preferred in this zone are the branches. ¶In Guinean region, find themselves transformers and gatherers and the matrimonial situation influences the use of the species. C ¶onstruction and the food are the most significant categories. ¶The sap and the sheets are the most taken collected bodies. ¶There are also uses common to these three regions. ¶These results enable to foresee a limited extent of the species in Guinean zone considering the number of uses and the exploitation of the sap which is a vital body of the species. ¶On the other hand, this is not in agreement with the results of modeling because the models of the futures reveal that the current distribution will be widened for R. hookeri and R. will vinifera whose individuals will cover all the Sudano-Guinean region and part of the Sudanian region. ¶As for the populations of R. sudanica, they will be always found concentrated in the Sudanian. ¶The evolution of these practical values in time and space according to the future ecological conditions of the zones in the current context of climatic change should be studied.

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