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Jha S.K.,Indian Central Soil Salinity Research Institute | Nayak A.K.,Indian Central Rice Research Institute | Sharma Y.K.,University of Lucknow
Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety

A study was carried out to assess toxicological risk from the fluoride (F) exposure due to ingestion of vegetables and cereal crops such as rice and wheat grown in potentially fluoridated area (brick kiln and sodic areas), of different age groups in Unnao district, Uttar Pradesh, India. Fluoride contents in vegetables and cereal were found to be in the order brick kiln sites>sodic sites>normal sites. Among vegetables maximum F concentration was found in spinach and mint, whereas in cereal crops, wheat accumulated more F than rice. The exposure dose of F was determined using estimated daily intake (EDI) and bio-concentration factor (BCF) of F. The children of age group 3-14 years in the potentially fluoridated area were found to be at the risk of fluorosis. The mean BCF value of F was the highest in mint (36.6mg/kgdwtplant/mg/kgdwtsoil), followed by spinach (33.99mg/kgdwtplant.mg/kgdwtsoil). © 2011 Elsevier Inc. Source

Singh D.,Krishi Vigyan Kendra | Singh R.K.,Indian Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Indian Journal of Traditional Knowledge

Capparis decidua (Forsk.) Edgew. commonly known as Kair, is an important indigenous shrub found growing along farm boundaries, orans, gochars (local grasslands) and wastelands, widely distributed in arid and semi-arid tracts of India. It is a densely branched shrub, reaching a height of 4-5 m, with a clear bole of 2.5 m. Its branches are tender and waxy with rough, corky, gray bark. Kair has the ability to survive in various habitats and can grow unattended and unprotected on barren lands. It has good soil binding capacity, a fair tolerance to salinity and alkalinity, and can help to improve the fertility of sand dunes and reduce alkalinity. Its xerophytic qualities, including a deep taproot system, scanty foliage, mucilaginous sap and tough conical spines make this shrub suitable for cultivation on a large scale, especially to combat soil and wind erosion on sandy wastelands. Significantly, the plant's unique capacity to tolerate drought and heat make it a good weather forecasting species, and it has played an important role in the rural economy of western Rajasthan and Gujarat. It provides people with food (pickle and vegetable), medicine, fodder, wood for carving, and fuel. The plant's mature fruits serve as valuable and integral source of nutrition for villagers of arid and semiarid regions, and the immature fruits are collected from natural stands and serve an additional source of income and nutrition for the rural poor. Medicinally, it is used to treat in cardiac and gastric troubles. It is also commonly used as a biofence and its termite-resistant wood is used by rural people for making handles, cartwheels, and other items. Source

Singh R.K.,Central Agricultural University | Singh R.K.,Indian Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Indian Journal of Traditional Knowledge

This study explores the interconnectedness between ecocultural knowledge and subsistence livelihoods of Monpa tribal communities in the West Kameng and Tawang districts of Arunachal Pradesh, India. For such indigenous and tribal peoples, local cultures, spiritual beliefs, social and ethical norms and interconnectedness with local ecosystems is the essence of their social capital. For Monpa people, ecocultural capital plays a particularly significant role in subsistence and conservation of natural resources. The Monpa have rich and diverse socio-cultural, economic and spiritual perceptions of their natural resources and landscapes. These ecocultural and spiritual values represent a challenge for resource managers seeking to integrate them in their top-to-bottom approaches to resource use and regulation. Results indicated that the ecological knowledge codified in Monpa language and culture varied according to altitude and peoples' access to particular ecosystems. Their overall ecocultural diversity, enhanced through cultural networks across communities, allowed the Monpa a wide degree of food availability and enhanced their health and well-being. Their diverse knowledge systems and cultural network among community members significantly affect the management practices pertaining to agriculture, animal husbandry, forest and aquatic resource's access pattern, food availability and maintaining the health of human and nature. The survival strategies intermingled with location specific ecological knowledge and indigenous management practices buffered by myths, customs, sacredness and traditional values assured sustainable and subsistence livelihood in harsh ecology; and maintaining the resilience of rainfed ecosystem. They emphasize the need for respectful land use, and described general landscape conditions consistent with such use. Source

Jha S.K.,Indian Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Clean - Soil, Air, Water

The geochemical characteristics and the spatial distribution of the fluoride were studied in the soils of Indo-Gangetic plains using multivariate analysis. The fluoride (F) distribution in soil profiles and surface soil (0-15cm) samples were studied. It was found that total fluoride (TF) in the profiles ranged from 248 to 786mgkg-1 with a mean of 515.1mgkg-1 whereas CaCl2 extractable soluble fluoride (FCa) was found to be in the range of 1.68 to 99.1mgFkg-1 soil. On the other hand, in surface soils, the TF and FCa ranged from 118 to 436mgkg-1 with a mean of 251.2mgkg-1 and 1.01 to 5.05mgkg-1 with a mean of 2.12mgkg-1, respectively, in the study area. The principal component analysis revealed that the natural weathering of fluoride bearing rock and minerals, various ion-exchange and dissolution processes in the soil, alkalinity, sodium adsorption ratio, calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), and clay contents of the soil are responsible for high fluoride occurrence in the area. The fluoride contamination index developed by using these factors could explain more than 76% variance of F contamination due to FCa in soils. The interpolated kriged map of FCa in surface soil indicated a distinct loop of 1.0-2.0, 2.0-3.0, 3.0-4.0, and >4.0mgkg-1. The results of this study show that combining of multivariate analysis and soil chemistry may be an effective approach to study the soil geo-chemistry of fluoride. A regular monitoring of fluoride leaching through the soil matrix is suggested as well as preventing measures and also the use of various defluoridation techniques. © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim. Source

Balemie K.,Institute of Biodiversity Conservation IBC | Singh R.K.,Indian Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Environmental Management

In this study, we surveyed diversity in a range of local crops in the Lume and Gimbichu districts of Ethiopia, together with the knowledge of local people regarding crop uses, socio-economic importance, conservation, management and existing threats. Data were collected using semistructured interviews and participant observation. The study identified 28 farmers' varieties of 12 crop species. Among these, wheat (Triticum turgidum) and tef (Eragrostis tef) have high intra-specific diversity, with 9 and 6 varieties respectively. Self-seed supply or seed saving was the main (80 %) source of seeds for replanting. Agronomic performance (yield and pest resistance), market demand, nutritional and use diversity attributes of the crop varieties were highlighted as important criteria for making decisions regarding planting and maintenance. Over 74 % of the informants grow a combination of "improved" and farmers' varieties. Of the farmers' varieties, the most obvious decline and/or loss was reported for wheat varieties. Introduction of improved wheat varieties, pest infestation, shortage of land, low yield performance and climate variability were identified as the principal factors contributing to this loss or decline. Appropriate interventions for future conservation and sustainable use of farmers' varieties were suggested. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012. Source

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