Ethnobotanical Survey of Plants in Folklore Medicine of Selected Communities of Yobe State, North-East Nigeria

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Biological Sciences, Yobe State University, PMB 1144, Damaturu, Nigeria

2 Department of Zoology, Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola, Adamawa State, Nigeria


Since time immemorial, traditional medicines especially medicinal plants have remained the mainstay of managing various ailments in underdeveloped and developing nations globally. Despite the availability of orthodox medicines, communities in low income countries rely largely on herbal preparations to manage and cure diseases. In this study, an ethnobotanical survey was conducted with a view to compile and document traditional medicinal plants and practices of six communities, i.e. three (3) from each of two Local Government Areas of Yobe State, Nigeria. Semi structured questionnaires aided by guided interviews were used to obtain information regarding traditional knowledge from 120 traditional herbalists, their attendants and community members. Results revealed that more males 80 (67%) than females 40 (33%) practice traditional medicines in general terms, with the majority of the respondents 36 (30%) falling in the age range of 51-60 years. Specifically, 28 (23.33%) traditional herbalists were observed to specialize in the treatment of fever and fever-related illnesses. A total of 60 medicinal plants belonging to 28 botanical families were identified and their medicinal values recorded. Out of the 28 botanical families recorded, Fabaceae was the most common family with nine (9) species of medicinal plants followed by Asteraceae and Moraceae families, with four (4) representative medicinal plant species each.  Similarly, leaves are the most common parts used followed by stem bark and roots/root bark respectively. There is a need to scientifically validate the traditional claim for the use of medicinal plants reported in the treatment of management of disease conditions.

Graphical Abstract

Ethnobotanical Survey of Plants in Folklore Medicine of Selected Communities of Yobe State, North-East Nigeria


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