Ecology and Ethnobotany in and around Api Nampa Conservation Area (ANCA), Darchula, Nepal



Background: Far-Western mountainous Region of Nepal is a rich source of floral diversity and medicinal plants. The latter is frequently being used in traditional healing systems in the region. In the present study, we aimed to document richness and diversity of flowering plant species including medicinal species and their indigenous uses in Api Nampa Conservation Area (ANCA) of Darchula district, Far Western Nepal. To be precise, we explored the detail ethnobotanical accounts of Hippophae species of the area.

Methods: Fieldwork for this study was carried out twice in July 2019 and July 2020. Ghajir Kshetti, Khirsha and Lamthing villages of eastern ANCA (considered as a protected site, government managed) and Patha, Ranghadi, Kantai and Batheldhunga villages of northern ANCA (considered as community-managed site) were sampled. A total of ten quadrats each measuring 10 m x 10 m size in each site was laid to inventory the species and analyze the ecological traits. For ethnobotanical assessment, two field observations were made and 20 people, representing male, female, senior citizens were interviewed. Supplementary information was collected during informal group discussions held in the villages and in district center.

Results: We recorded 76 plant species including Hippophae salicifolia in two different study sites of ANCA, Darchula. The species belonged to 33 families and 62 genera. The dominant plant families were Pinaceae, Rosaceae, Poaceae, Ericaceae and Asteraceae. The comparative assessment showed that the protected site has greater number plant species 60 (78.94%) whereas the northern ANCA site has only 37 (48.68%) species. The highest IVI (26.95) was recorded for Hippophae salicifolia and minimum (2.37) for Daphne papyracea. As dominant, the Hippophae salicifolia was frequently used traditionally for primary health care, local livelihood, nutrition, cosmetics, and environmental management. Out of 76, 65 species were used for ethnobotany and 11 species for ethnomedicine.

Conclusions: Protected ANCA site is rich in plant species. The site and whole ANCA are dominated by useful plant species such as Hippophae salicifolia, Alnus nepalensis, Elaeagnus parvifolia, Girardiania diversifolia, Ilex excelsa, Juglans regia, etc. This study contributes to the wealth of medicinal plants and ethnobotany of ANCA, Darchula. Conservation of useful plant species complements the rural livelihood inhabiting the rugged and remote mountains of Far-Western Nepal.

Key words: Api Nampa Conservation Area, Diversity, Darchula, Ethnobotany, Seabuckthorn.

Author Biography

Man Dev Bhatt, Tribhuvan University, Nepal

associate professor, department of botany




How to Cite

Dirgha R. Joshi, Ripu M. Kunwar, Youba R. Pokharel, & Bhatt, M. D. (2021). Ecology and Ethnobotany in and around Api Nampa Conservation Area (ANCA), Darchula, Nepal. Ethnobotany Research and Applications, 22, 1–13. Retrieved from