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Conservation Assessment of Hindu-Kush Mountain Region of Pakistan: A Case Study of Utror and Gabral Valleys, District Swat, Pakistan

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Author(s): Muhammad Hamayun | Sumera Afzal Khan | In-Jung Lee | Mir Ajab Khan

Journal: Asian Journal of Plant Sciences
ISSN 1682-3974

Volume: 5;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 725;
Date: 2006;
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Keywords: Conservation | Utror and Gabral | conservation status scale | Hindu-Kush Himalayas | Swat

ABSTRACT
An ethnobotanical project was carried out to investigate conservation status of the flora of Utror and Gabral. The twin valleys are located in the remote northwestern part of District Swat. The area is gifted with diverse and unique flora, as it is adjacent to the confluence point of Himalayas, Hindu-Kush and Karakorum. Over exploitation of plant resources combined with improper harvesting and post harvesting techniques have intensified pressure on ethnobotanically priced flora of the area. Present study revealed that 17.61% of the total utility plants of Utror and Gabral valleys are threatened, of which 4.54% are Endangered, 5.68% Vulnerable, 4.54% Rare and 2.84% Near Threatened. The study confirmed that the area possesses great potential for cultivation and sustainable harvesting of economically important plant resources. Species like Colchicum luteum, Dioscorea deltoidea, Bistorta amplexicaulis, Caltha alba, Valeriana jatamansii, Viola biflora, Viola canescens, Polygonatum verticilatum, Acorus calamus, Podophyllum emodi, Saussorea lappa, Paeonia emodi and Geranium wallichianum can be introduced as marginal crops in the area. Conservation status of Acorus calamus, Podophyllum emodi, Saussorea lappa, Polygonatum verticilatum, Paeonia emodi, Ephedra gerardiana, Bunium persicum and Berberis vulgaris indicate that these plant species need special attention before they are eroded genetically.
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