Tesfa Mossie and Beksisa Urge
Herbal therapies are still preferred in primary health care for livestock in Ethiopia. Local traditional health care workers of a given community have their own specific knowledge of medicinal plants to manage livestock health problems. The objectives of the study were to document veterinary use of medicinal plants and associated indigenous knowledge of local users in Jimma zone, Ethiopia. Data was collected between April 2017 and May 2018. Individual-based field interviews were done with 210 purposively selected informants via a semi-structured questionnaire. The questionnaire elucidated information on harvesting, preparation, routes, use, types, and parts used. The study identified 110 species belonging to 55 families as being used to treat 30 livestock ailments. Asteraceae had the highest number of species, constituting 19.1% of the total, followed by Fabaceae (12.9%) and Rutaceae (4.5%). Herbs were the dominant growth form of these plant species, followed by trees and shrubs. Leaves and roots were the most frequently utilized plant parts, accounting for 75% and 10.83%, respectively. The current findings indicate the presence of abundant plant species in the study area. This rich plant diversity is the primary source of their medication. Herbs are popular as a source of herbal therapies due to their higher pharmacologically active ingredients, availability everywhere, and ease of collection when compared to trees and shrubs. Therefore, traditional healers should be encouraged to transfer their indigenous knowledge to their families and relatives to preserve it for the next generation. Phytochemical and pharmacological screening of plant species has the highest fidelity level needed to extract bioactive compounds and test them through in vitro and in vivo assay methods.
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