Ugandan Chimps, Healers Use Same Herbs

This video from the USA is called: Bush or chimp; you decide!

From New Vision in Uganda:

January 11, 2007

Posted to the web January 12, 2007

Gerald Tenywa

RESEARCHERS at Kibale National Park have discovered that chimps eat plants similar to the ones used by traditional healers to treat malaria and diarrhoea.

“The chimps and human beings around Kibale use similar plants to overcome sickness,” Sabrina Kreif, a researcher, said.

She was speaking at Makerere University’s Faculty of Science at a ceremony to launch a memorandum of cooperation between Uganda Wildlife Authority and French institutions.

In her five-year study at Kanyawara research station, located on the edge of Kibale, Krief found that chimps carefully select and consume plants like mululuza, which have little nutritive value.

These plants, however, have medical properties that help the chimps to overcome malaria and diarrhoea, as well as to expel worms from their intestines, Krief said.

Her research included collecting and analysing chimp dung and urine.

“I had to examine the dung to find out the plants in their diet and then extract the active components,” she said.

She also monitored the behaviour of the chimps to find out if there was any improvement each time sick chimps ate the plants.

One might wonder whether these plants also help against mental illness.

If so, a certain chimp in Washington, DC, in the USA, judging from his Iraq war plans, has forgotten to have his mululuza … no, sorry, I retract this; I don’t want to insult chimpanzees!

Bush and chimp

Marabou storks in Uganda: here.

3 thoughts on “Ugandan Chimps, Healers Use Same Herbs

  1. Uganda: Marabou Storks a Blessing, Not Nuisance

    New Vision (Kampala)

    March 7, 2007
    Posted to the web March 8, 2007

    Peace Nakitto

    Just because they look ugly to us does not mean they feel ugly. The Marabou stork (Kalooli) is commonly portrayed as being pathetic, smelly, dirty, ugly and lacking good motive. Clearly, the Marabou Stork has a public relations problem.

    With a pink head and neck that is lacks feathers, the bird appears gloomy, lonely and unhappy. In adults, a reddish balloon or air bag hangs on the throat. It’s an air sack used for buoyancy during flight and an extension of it’s digestion system.

    The bird is a scavenger. When carcasses cannot be found, it has been known to kill other birds or feed on garbage to satisfy its insatiable appetite. Little wonder that many people seem to hate it with a passion. Yet, despite its ungainly looks and traits, the Marabou Stork performs quite a useful service of cleaning up our environment. It is an indicator of the state of hygiene within a particular area. Urban centres like Kampala City tend to have several heaps of uncollected rotting garbage littered on the streets. This leaves the Marabou Stork with the duty of cleaning it up. Probably Kampala City Council would have a lot to learn from the Marabou Storks about proper waste management techniques.

    However, we too can learn the importance of sorting our garbage at a household level from the Marabou Storks, who seem to separate the biodegradable waste material from the non-biodegradable when feeding. At a convenient moment, a Marabou Stork, with its long bill drawn like a fork and knife, will make a quick dash to a rotting garbage heap, grab a piece of flesh or food leftover and leave the bones, plastics and polythene bags for disposal. The Marabous consume almost anything biodegaradable that can go down their throats weighing as a much as 600g.

    The Marabou Stork does not deserve to be scorned and maligned, since it has left its place in the wild to remind us of our ‘poor’ garbage disposal and management habits within our environment. If you feel disturbed by their presence, then I would gladly advise you to dispose off and manage your garbage more responsibly. Otherwise, we should all be grateful to the efficiency and industriousness of the Marabou Storks in cleaning up our environment.

    The writer is the Conservation Educator at the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre, Entebbe


  2. Pingback: Prehistory of Chinese farming | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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