Nature Intact: Indigenous Common Grazing Land Management in Waraza Lasho Kebele of Sodo Zuria Woreda, Wolaita Zone, South Ethiopia

Muluken Tamirat


This study deals with the Wolaita people’s indigenous knowledge and its implication in the practices of natural resources management, with the focus on the preservation of common grazing land. The Wolaita is known for huge grazing land that has been serving as main source of green fodder for cattle in the region where cattle play pivotal roles in securing livelihoods. The grazing land has been kept intact until very recently but its size has considerably shrank with the building of hydro-electric substation in the area. The study has employed qualitative research methods. Data has been gathered through data collection instruments such as interviews, focus group discussions, non-participant observation, case study, and secondary data analysis. Both primary and secondary data sources were used to compile the data for the study. Accordingly, the traditional or indigenous common grazing land management in Waraza Lasho kebele, Wolaita zone is analyzed in this paper by applying the analytical frame work. Hence, the factors behind the protection of the common grazing land are thoroughly and systematically analyzed. The paper, therefore mainly deals with three central issues. These are: factors responsible for preservation of the common grazing land, incentives for different classes of actors and the outcome obtained following the incentives with the benefits it brings. The first section of the paper begins with discussing factors that backed the continued existence of the common grazing land in the community despite the ever increasing urban expansion. These includes attributes of the common grazing land, attributes of the community, and attributes of the rules and institutions constituting the traditional management of the common grazing lands. Following this, the incentives which are created for different classes of actors were assessed and then followed by the outcomes that come along with the incentives.  The study has depicted that the time tested traditional rules, attributes of the community and the grazing land as well as the incentives has contributed to conservation of the common grazing land.

Keywords: Common grazing land, Indigenous methods of conservation, Environment

DOI: 10.7176/DCS/10-12-02

Publication date: December 31st 2020


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