University of Oulu

Jugli, S.; Chakravorty, J.; Meyer-Rochow, V.B. Tangsa and Wancho of North-East India Use Animals not only as Food and Medicine but also as Additional Cultural Attributes. Foods 2020, 9, 528.

Tangsa and Wancho of North-East India use animals not only as food and medicine but also as additional cultural attributes

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Author: Jugli, Salomi1; Chakravorty, Jharna1; Meyer-Rochow, Victor Benno2,3
Organizations: 1Biochemical Nutrition Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Rajiv Gandhi University, Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh 791112, India
2Department of Plant Medicals, Andong National University, Andong GB 36729, Korea
3Department of Ecology and Genetics, Oulu University, FIN 90140 Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2020
Publish Date: 2020-10-14


Cultural and ritual uses of animals beyond those for food and medicine should not be dismissed if we wish to understand the pressure that wildlife is under. We documented such uses for the Tangsa and Wancho tribals of Eastern Arunachal Pradesh (India). Group discussions with assembled members of 10 accessible villages in each of the tribal areas were carried out in 2015 and 2016. Vernacular names of culturally important species were noted and details of hunting practices were recorded. The different uses of animals and their parts during rituals and festivals and their significance in decorations and adornments, in supernatural beliefs and in connection with tribal folklore (stories) are documented. Folklore helps us understand why some species are hunted and consumed while others for no apparent reason are killed or simply ignored. Similarities as well as differences between the two tribes were recorded and possible reasons for the differences are given. The roles that the government as well as the tribal leaders play to halt or slow down the erosion and gradual disappearance of traditions that define the two cultures without losing already rare and endangered species are highlighted.

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Series: Foods
ISSN: 2304-8158
ISSN-E: 2304-8158
ISSN-L: 2304-8158
Volume: 9
Issue: 4
Article number: 528
DOI: 10.3390/foods9040528
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
Funding: Financial support for V.B.M.-R. to complete this research came from Chuleui Jung of Andong National University’s Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2018R1A6A1A03024862). A grant from the Government of India (DBT NER/Agri/24/2013) to the Department of Biotechnology for the financial support of the project was received by J.C. and a “Maulana Azad National Fellowship” for the financial assistance to S.J. came from the Ministry of Minority Affairs and the University Grants Commission.
Copyright information: © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (