THE POTENTIAL ROLE OF SOCIAL TABOOS IN CONSERVATION AND MANAGEMENT OF SPECIES AND THEIR HABITATS
Taboos represent traditional social rules that regulate human behaviour . Social taboos (on species and habitat) are also called Resources and Habitat Taboos (RHTs). RHTs include specific species, habitat, clan, temporal, segment, method, life history, and taboos . Social taboos may protect endemic, threatened and keystone species and their habitats . Taboo species may be used for traditional religion or medicinal purposes.
Specific species taboos are comprised of taboos that thoroughly protect plants and animals in space and time. The specific species can be avoided for different uses for example detrimental use, consumption, hunting and killing . The radiated tortoise (Geochelone radiata) is a species native to Southern portion of Species such as sacred fig (Ficus religiosa), mountain lion (Felis concolor ) and southern pocket gopher (Thomomys umbrinus emotus) are protected by Hindus’ specific species taboo all over the entirety of
Species such as sacred fig (Ficus religiosa), mountain lion (Felis concolor ) and southern pocket gopher (Thomomys umbrinus emotus) are protected by Hindus’ specific species taboo all over the entirety of
The threatened species are restricted by taboos in different community around the world from using number of birds and reptiles which are classified as threatened by IUCN. The species such as spectacled bear (Tremarctos ornatus); giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus) and giant anteater (Myrmecophoga tridactyla) are protected by taboo in
Habitat taboos control access and use of resources in a particular area  for example sacred habitat (trees and plant are allowed to grow without any disturbance). Sacred habitats are found in
The Southern range dry spine of
The dam has a big snake. Traditional healers are allowed to use forests for medicinal purposes and dam and other people are prohibited. Trees such as Adansoma digitata and Sterculia opendiculata are not cut because whoever cut these species may be affected by evil spirit. Trees that are found in a water sources and on top of the mountain are not cut. People believe that these trees bring rainfalls and conserve water [ ]. As a result, people respect their local taboos and religion by not using dam and cutting the trees.
Temporary taboos prohibit access to resources in time that is daily, periodic, weekly or monthly. The chief of Nkavele village may compel a periodic taboo after cyclones in season of severe drought to conserve food. Similarly, the chief of Nghomu village may place taboos on the use of coconut palms The Ghana people have a daily taboo which is obligated on fishing on a particular weekday for example Tuesday. The similar taboo is also articulated among northwest
Method taboos are responsible for controlling method and techniques for removal of species. Fishing using toxin is a taboo because toxins destroy coral reefs. The methods that were articulated as taboo in
Life history taboos control the removal of species at vulnerable stages of its life history based sex, age, size or reproductive status . The studies of life history taboo indicated analysis of spawning fish and bird eggs are expressed by taboo. The taboo of hunting fruit bats expressed in daytime settle on trees in midst of villages. As results bats are not overexploited in
Segment taboos are responsible for decreasing the rate of exploiting a species . The studies of Amazonian group indicated that segment taboo may decrease hunting pressure of some species with by approximately 50-80%  by granting access to specific people for instance chiefs.
Clan taboos usually involve totem (is any entity that stare over clan ) species. The clan members of
The ethnic group of West and
The restriction on the use of certain animals, plants and habitat play an important role in conservation. The endemic, threatened and keystone species and their habitats will not go extinct if people continue to use their social taboo to conserve.
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