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Vegetables from the wild: a report on the edible wild herbs and shrubs used by the Tutsa tribe of Arunachal Pradesh, North East India


Arunachal Pradesh in eastern Himalaya is a state with diverse ethnic groups who live in close association with nature. Among more than 100 tribes, Tutsa is an ethnic community inhabiting one of the remotest regions of the state namely Tirap and Changlang districts. The tribe is known for rich oral traditional knowledge which is still undocumented. Therefore, an attempt was made to document their eating habits from the wild. The field survey (2019-2021) resulted in the documentation of many economically valuable wild herbs and shrubs used by the community as an alternative food source. The study noted that the art of eating from the wild act as a rescuer to the Tutsas at times of famine or when the region gets disconnected due to landslides and other natural calamities. Clerodendron glandulosam, Diplazium esculentum, Pilea umbrosa and Piper pedicellatum species are some of the favourites of the Tutsas. However, it was observed that such traditional indigenous knowledge is limited to older age groups. Therefore, this kind of timely documentation is much-valued information.


Arunachal Pradesh, Ethnobotanical, Traditional Knowledge, Tutsa, Wild Plants.


Author Biography

Nyaton Kitnya

School of Health and Allied Sciences

Pradosh Mahadani

School of Health and Allied Sciences


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