The Introduction of Modern Beekeeping

Although bee-keeping with frame hives had first been introduced by early missionaries at the end of the nineteenth century, throughout much of the colonial period the collecting of honey was either through traditional beekeeping methods, or by sporadic and rather opportunistic 'raiding' of the hives in order to obtain the honey. Soon after independence the Malawi government, principally through the Ministry of Agriculture, began to implement various feasibility studies and surveys in order to...

Reflections on Folk Classifications

Brachycerus Labrusca

Living in a largely oral culture it has to be recognized that Malawians have no standardized terminology when it comes to insects, and the names given to insects vary widely. Not only are there ethnic and regional variations throughout the country - these are detailed in the appendix -but there are numerous cases of interchangeable synonyms, even with regard to a single individual. Thus both mafulufute and nyamu may be used to signify the thief ant Carebara vidua either pherupheru or gulugufe...

Teaestatemanagers Thyolo

Many other species of grasshoppers and crickets Order Orthoptera occasionally feed on cotton, but do not normally cause extensive damage to the crop - although in certain years they may occur in such large numbers that they inflict local damage that can be quite serious, or even total. These include the following species Gryllotalpa africana Gryllus bimaculatus Brachytrypes membranaceus Enyaliopsis petersi Cymatomera sp Homorocoryphus vicinus Pseudorhynchus pungens Nomadacris septemfasciata...

Ootheca Mutabilis

A serious pest of maize, although local people tend to rank the white grub mbozi zoyera and the elegant grasshoppers m'Nunkhadala as more harmful pests than the termites. No control measures are used against termites, although when they become too problematic the queen termite may be dug out and destroyed - yet people are reluctant to do this, as the winged termites ngumbi are a favoured and important source of relish. There is a general feeling that farmers who burn all crop residues, rather...

Caterpillars Lepidoptera

Insect With Spines That Detach

Along with the winged termites, edible caterpillars are the commonest and most esteemed of the edible insects - and seem to be eaten throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Tessman at the beginning of last century recorded that the Pangwe of the Cameroon consumed more than twenty different kinds of edible caterpillar, and recognized each by its specific name and knew its particular host tree Vide Bodenheimer 1951 188 . More recently Carl Silow 1976 has recorded thirty-one edible caterpillars from...

Nsabwe Order Phthiraptera Lice

This is the common human louse Pediculus humanus. Order Hemiptera Bugs The order Hemiptera true bugs consists of 12 folk generics, the majority of which have a functional status, either as edible insects green shield bug and cicada or as crop pests. Aphids that are a serious pest on plants, such as the cotton aphid Aphis gossyphi are described as 'plant lice' nsabwe za zomera . Nezara robusta Nezara viridula Antestiopsis lineaticollis Sphaerocollis ocellatus Anoplocnemis curvipes Anoplocnemis...

Folk Classifications of Insects a Comparative Perspective

Folk classifications are far less comprehensive than the taxonomic systems of professional biologists, and, as Fikret Berkes writes, the gap between the two classificatory systems increases as the cultural and practical significance of the animal or plant decreases. Thus trees and the larger mammals are often clearly recognized, and there is an almost one-to-one correspondence between folk and scientific nomenclature with regard to the more conspicuous plants and mammals Morris 1996, 1998...