Indigenous use of tropical biodiversity and ecosystem domestication

Maximilien Guèze

    Research output: Chapter in BookChapterResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    © Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016. All rights are reserved. People have long-induced modifi cations of ecosystems to enhance the suitable conditions for useful plant species; similar to plant domestication, these modifi cations can be regarded as a continuum of use and management. In tropical forests, indigenous people have contributed to these modifi cations by using ecosystems both actively and passively through a process called ecosystem domestication . In this chapter, we explore the gradient of ecosystem domestication and its implications to biodiversity. Historically, indigenous societies actively managed ecosystems to make their livelihoods possible in areas otherwise inadequate; the effects of such past management systems are still observable in present biodiversity. Currently, indigenous people continue to modify the ecosystems in which they live, using a diverse range of management practices (e.g., forest gardens, fallow improvement, and agroforestry techniques) which can be equated to different degrees of anthropogenic disturbances. These practices have deep consequences for overall biodiversity, often enhancing it. Therefore, areas inhabited by indigenous people show a high potential for new approaches of biocultural conservation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationIntroduction to Ethnobiology
    Pages199-204
    Number of pages5
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016

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