Blue Carbon Financing of Mangrove Conservation in the Abidjan Convention Region: A Feasibility Study

etc.) are provided by Bandaranayake (1998: 141), which lists treatments including: asthma, diarrhoea, diabetes, conjunctivitis, as well as presenting the possible use of toxic substances. Mangrove trees’ wood, leaves, fruit, flowers, bark and roots are used in decoction to cure stomach pains, toothache, diseases (malaria, dysentery, diabetes, etc.), and ease childbirth. Wood, leaves and bark are also used in plasters to heal fractures and wounds, while the roots, leaves and poison are used to catch fish in canals. In Cameroon (Atheull et al., 2011), A. germinans leaves and bark are used to treat malaria patients by combining them in a bowl or pot with boiled water to produce steam which the patient, under a thick blanket, then inhales. The same technique is also applied to cure measles and gonorrhoea, but using the leaves and bark of L. racemosa. An extraction of boiled Rhizophora bark is used to stop external haemorrhages and to cure tooth decay. Meanwhile, the use of mangrove chemicals for health purposes is reported in Mpalla, Epassi and Milende in particular. Table 6 gives a list of ailments that are treated with mangroves in the Lower Volta. Mangroves also contribute to the production of honey, which is mainly used for its medicinal properties, rather than as a foodstuff. Pollens from mangrove species such as Ceriops, A. marina, Aegialitis rotunidifolia and Cynometra ramifolia are particularly sought by the local bees (Apis mellifera), which produce the highest quality honey (Bandaranayake, 1998). Conservation and governance of mangrove and its resources through culture and traditions Mangora & Shalli (2014) recognize the value of traditional ecologicalknowledge(TEK)incontributingtotheconservation and management of natural resources. TEK is the body of knowledge, acquired over time, practices and beliefs that define the relationship between human, other lifeforms and the environment. In West, Central and Southern Africa, TEK related to mangrove resources and spaces (e.g. fish breeding,

Salt is an essential product to dry and thus preserve fish. The early Portuguese navigators document salt collection as early as 1492 (Cormier-Salem, 1999). Their narratives detail two distinct practices. Firstly, solar evaporation, whereby salt is extracted from the mudflats and the tannes (bare and salinized areas) located inmangrove zones.The early European explorers observed this on Saloum Island, and called it “red” salt because of the colour of the ponds, but in fact the salt is pure and high-quality. The salt is collected fromponds or wells dug in the mud flats which are regularly maintained. During the dry season (December–June), the saline water evaporates and women collect the salt exposed by the wind and sun. The second method is used during the rainy season where (traditionally) women collect the salty mud, add water, decant it and boil off the excess water (using mangrove wood as fuel) to obtain a grey-white salt (Cormier-Salem, 1999). A number of “local” and “national” recipes are based on mangrove products, for example in Senegal: rice with oysters (Cee bu yokos), rice cooked in palm oil with vegetables, smoked bonga (Ethmalosa) and cockles (Supekandja). A recipe for ndew is based on the fruit and the seed of Avicennia. The fruit pulp, rich in vitamins and oil, is used to make the sauce; the seed is boiled, then dried and crushed to make flour. Mangrove products are also consumed as drinks and alcohol made from wood, flowers or leaves, as well as fruit-fermented beverages, vinegar and teas. Medicinal values The medicinal use of mangroves and mangrove-associated species is a vast field of investigation, of which we have only touched the surface. The Arabian herbalist Ibn Sina, better known under the name of Avicenna (980-1036), was the first specialist in mangrove ethno-medicine, and the Arabs developed a rich pharmacopoeia during this time (Rollet, 1975). The most accurate data on chemical components (alkaloids, saponins and other substances) and medicinal uses of the various components of mangroves (bark, leaves,

Table 6: Medical uses of mangrove species in Ghana




• used with palm oil as an ointment for boils • extract used for fungal infections of the skin • treatment of diarrhoea and dysentery in children • leprosy • sore throat • ashes used as a salt substitute • powdered bark with palm oil for lice, ringworm and mange • germinating seeds used as a poison

Roots Bark

Rhizophora racemosa

Leaves Bark Seeds Leaves Latex Roots Bark

Avicennia africana = germinans

• decoction used as a febrifuge (fevers) • applied to cuts to stop bleeding • ground and boiled as a cure for catarrh • used in the treatment of gonorrhoea

Conocarpus erecta

Source C. Gordon observations from the Lower Volta


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