Forests in Monyul: Distribution and Management
Forests are important resources for the local people in mountainous Arunachal Pradesh. Inhabitants of the Dirang area in West Kameng categorize forests into three types: soeba shing [gso pa shing], those used for collecting fallen leaves; borong [bo rong], those used for gathering fuel wood; and moon [mun], those used for gathering timber and hunting. Shing means “tree”. Fallen oak leaves are collected from soeba shing around the villages and spread over agricultural fields as fertilizer for barley and buckwheat, which are produced as subsidiary crops of maize, or as a mulch to inhibit weeds or prevent soil erosion during the rainy season. Each type of forest is managed according to its uses. However, this forest culture has undergone changes since the 1980s. Illegal logging has become common, and the price of timber has continued to rise. Local residents in these areas have only recently begun to practice forest conservation. The focus of this chapter is on the distribution of forests, their uses, and their management by the local inhabitants and the related changes that have occurred in the Monpa area.
KeywordsForest distribution Fallen leaves Oak trees Timber use Forest conservation
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