DRC: Okapi Faunal Reserve

UNEP, WCMC, World Heritage UNESCO. Excerpt from website: "...Cultural Heritage: Hunter-gatherers and shifting cultivators have occupied the Ituri Forest for centuries. The ancestries of present forest peoples can be traced back to both Sudanic and Bantu migrations as well as to more pygmoid stocks. Presently, the Pygmy groups that inhabit the Ituri forest include the Efe and Mbuti. They excel in the use and identification of wild plants. Pygmies have a semi-nomadic hunter-gatherer lifestyle and when not hunting with traditional nets or archery, gather insects, fungi, fruits, seeds, plants, and honey. They depend on wild game and fish to supplement dietary protein requirements. Most of the agrarians in the Ituri region are Bantu, Zaire's dominant ethnic group that includes Lese, Mamvu, Bira, Ndaka, and Budu. Long standing economic and cultural ties exist between pygmies and traditional forest agriculturalists, with the pygmies depending on exchanges to acquire cultivated starch foods to supplement a forest diet rich in protein (T. Hart, pers. comm., 1995)..."

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