Use of wild birds by residents of the municipality of Fagundes, in Paraiba’s semiarid region: an ethnoornitologic approach

Veruska Asevedo Nobrega, José Aécio Alves Barbosa, Rômulo Romeu Nóbrega Alves


Since the mankind’s beginnings, birds were associated with humans in a relationship that involved
use, mastery and admiration. Many birds species are kept as pets or as decorations, whether by its visual beauty or for
their ability to sing. This study was aimed to discover the relations of wild bird usage by locals in rural areas in the
municipality of Fagundes, Paraiba’s semiarid region, looking to identify and characterize the socio-economic, cultural and
environmental contexts in which such uses occur. The information was obtained through opened interviews and semistructured
questionnaires given to 56 locals. The interviewees cited 53 differents species of birds used for many purposes,
especially for food or as pets. This result reflects the fact that the birds are used for subsistence and are a natural resource
of great importance to the culture and economy of the locals. The most frequently mentioned species by interviewees
were: ‘rolinha-picui’ (Columbina picui), ‘ribaçã’ (Zenaida auriculata), ‘rolinha-cambuta’ (Columbina minuta), ‘lambu-dopé-
roxo’ (Crypturellus tataupa) and ‘galo-de-campina’ (Paroaria dominicana). Among the species cited, one is present in
the list of endangered species: ‘pintassilgo’ (Sporagra yarrellii). Some interviewees also noted that the birds species
which were usually captured, are becoming increasingly scarce, suggesting a reduction of the natural populations. Therefore,
it is important to understand the context in which the uses of birds occur and socio-cultural factors in order to establish
management plans associated with the sustainable use of this resource.



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