Contribution of Non-Wood Forest Products (NWFP) to Livelihood Generation Products in Eriti Community Forest Wetlands, Ogun State, Nigeria
An ethno-botanical study of non-wood forest products (NWFP) extraction in Eriti Community Forest Wetlands was carried out with the aim of providing an additional baseline data for policy makers on need for the conservation and proper management of wetlands in forest areas. Respondents (400) drawn from 8 fringe villages of the Eriti Forest Wetlands provided the data for the study. The methods adopted include group discussions, participant observations and interpersonal interviews using pretested and structured questionnaire. The result analyses were descriptive using percentages, mean, mode and frequency distribution tools. The results showed that the respondents were highly dependent on the extraction of NWFP for livelihood generation especially at the subsistence level. The NWFP include medicinal products, edible leaves and fruits, wrapping leaves, mushrooms, wild-animal products, snails, palm wine and chewing sticks. The extraction of the identified products were gender bias as majority of the respondents were males (75%) and married (97%) indicating that the extraction of the products can be integrated into the family lines. The negative impacts of NWFP extraction on the wetland ecosystem was observed because of the destructive means of harvesting. The paper suggests appropriate management policies for the protection of the wetland ecosystems for environmental sustainability.