Diversity, endemism and indigenous uses of wild edible plants of Shikari Devi Wildlife Sanctuary in Himachal Pradesh, North Western Himalaya, India.
The rural communities living in the mountainous region of the Himalaya are largely dependent upon the forest resources for their day to day needs. Among these, wild edibles plants form the important component of food items of the inhabitants. In view of this an attempt has been made to assess the diversity, distribution pattern, nativity and endemism of wild edible plants of Shikari Devi Wildlife Sanctuary in Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh, North Western Himalaya. Total 71 wild edible plants belonging to 38 families and 55 genera were recorded based on extensive and intensive surveys and interviews of the local knowledgeable people. Different parts of the plants were utilized, of which fruit (35), followed by leaves (16), seeds (12) and roots (08) were used the maximum. 39 species natives, 30 spp. non-natives and 20 near endemics were recorded between 1800-2800 m. Besides, information on the other uses of the wild edible plants was also collected. The study on the quantitative assessment of wild edible plants is necessary to identify the potential values, develop propogation protocols, and investigations of neutraceuticals and establish them in ex-situ and in-situ conditions, which would help in raising the economy of the natives living in the Himalaya.