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ContentsResearch Articles131444607386Notes on Economic 96Plants99Declaration of Kaua‘iPeter Raven, Sir Ghillean Prance, and othersThe Rattan Trade of Northern Myanmar: Species, Supplies,and SustainabilityCharles M. Peters, Andrew Henderson, U Myint Maung, U SawLwin, U Tin Maung Ohn, U Kyaw Lwin, and U Tun ShaungVol. 61 No. 1Spring 2007Devoted to Past, Present, and Future Uses of Plants by PeopleA Potential Antioxidant Resource: Endophytic Fungi fromMedicinal PlantsWu-Yang Huang, Yi-Zhong Cai, Jie Xing, Harold Corke, andMei SunAgrobiodiversity Change in a Saharan Desert Oasis,1919–2006: Historic Shifts in Tasiwit (Berber) and BedouinCrop Inventories of Siwa, EgyptGary Paul NabhanAllozymic, Morphological, Phenological, Linguistic, Plant Use,and Nutritional Data of Benincasa hispida (Cucurbitaceae)Kendrick L. Marr, Yong-Mei Xia, and Nirmal K. BhattaraiDescribing Maize (Zea mays L.) Landrace Persistence in theBajío of Mexico: A Survey of 1940s and 1950s CollectionLocationsK. J. Chambers, S. B. Brush, M. N. Grote, and P. GeptsEthnobotany and Effects of Harvesting on the PopulationEcology of Syngonanthus nitens (Bong.) Ruhland(Eriocaulaceae), a NTFP from Jalapão Region, Central BrazilIsabel Belloni Schmidt, Isabel Benedetti Figueiredo, andAldicir ScariotOne Hundred Years of Echinacea angustifolia Harvest in theSmoky Hills of Kansas, USADana M. Price and Kelly KindscherECONOMIC BOTANY Vol. 61, no. 1, pp. 1–108 Spring 200731DepartmentsEconomicBotanyEconomic Botany Volume 61(1)Changes in Size Preference of Illegally Extracted Heart of Palmfrom Euterpe precatoria (Arecaceae) in Braulio Carrillo NationalPark, Costa RicaGerardo AvalosBook ReviewsGung Aung’s elephant Aung Bu carries rattan (the elusive Plectocomia assamica Griff.) out of a forest in northern Myanmar, beginning its journeythrough a global market. See the article by Charles Peters et al. on page 3.Published for The Society for Economic Botanyby The New York Botanical Garden PressIssued 30 March 2007

ContentsResearch ArticlesEconomic Botany Volume 61 (1)13143144607386Notes on Economic 96PlantsDepartments99Declaration of Kaua‘iPeter Raven, Sir Ghillean Prance, and othersThe Rattan Trade of Northern Myanmar: Species, Supplies,and SustainabilityCharles M. Peters, Andrew Henderson, U Myint Maung, U SawLwin, U Tin Maung Ohn, U Kyaw Lwin, and U Tun ShaungA Potential Antioxidant Resource: Endophytic Fungi fromMedicinal PlantsWu-Yang Huang, Yi-Zhong Cai, Jie Xing, Harold Corke, andMei SunAgrobiodiversity Change in a Saharan Desert Oasis,1919–2006: Historic Shifts in Tasiwit (Berber) and BedouinCrop Inventories of Siwa, EgyptGary Paul NabhanAllozymic, Morphological, Phenological, Linguistic, Plant Use,and Nutritional Data of Benincasa hispida (Cucurbitaceae)Kendrick L. Marr, Yong-Mei Xia, and Nirmal K. BhattaraiDescribing Maize (Zea mays L.) Landrace Persistence in theBajío of Mexico: A Survey of 1940s and 1950s CollectionLocationsK. J. Chambers, S. B. Brush, M. N. Grote, and P. GeptsEthnobotany and Effects of Harvesting on the PopulationEcology of Syngonanthus nitens (Bong.) Ruhland(Eriocaulaceae), a NTFP from Jalapão Region, Central BrazilIsabel Belloni Schmidt, Isabel Benedetti Figueiredo, andAldicir ScariotOne Hundred Years of Echinacea angustifolia Harvest in theSmoky Hills of Kansas, USADana M. Price and Kelly KindscherChanges in Size Preference of Illegally Extracted Heart of Palmfrom Euterpe precatoria (Arecaceae) in Braulio Carrillo NationalPark, Costa RicaGerardo AvalosBook Reviews

The Rattan Trade of Northern Myanmar: Species, Supplies, andSustainability1Charles M. Peters2,*, Andrew Henderson3, U Myint Maung4, U SawLwin5, U Tin Maung Ohn6, U Kyaw Lwin7, and U Tun Shaung82Kate E. Tode Curator of Botany, Institute of Economic Botany, The New York Botanical Garden,Bronx, NY 104583Curator, Institute of Systematic Botany, The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY 104584Park Warden, Myanmar Forest Department, Hukaung Tiger Reserve, Tanai, Kachin State, Myanmar5Myanmar Horticulturist Association, Yangon, Myanmar6Associate Professor, Department of Botany, University of Yangon, Yangon, Myanmar7Assistant Lecturer, Kalay University, Kalay, Sagaing Division, Myanmar8Media Assistant, Wildlife Conservation Society, Myanmar Program, Yangon, Myanmar*Corresponding author; e-mail: charlesmpeters@gmail.comThe Rattan Trade of Northern Myanmar: Species, Supplies, and Sustainability. AlthoughMyanmar exports millions of dollars of rattan cane each year, the last systematic treatmentof rattans in this country was done over 100 years ago, and virtually nothing has been written about the collection and trade of this important forest resource. Here we report the results from a study of rattans in the Hukaung Valley Tiger Reserve in northern Myanmar. Atotal of 15 species of rattan were encountered; seven species are new records for Myanmarand two species are new to science. Inventory transects revealed that the density of commercial rattans in local forests averages 40.5 canes 4 m long/hectare. Populations of allspecies appear to be actively regenerating. The current pattern of rattan exploitation, however, is largely uncontrolled and will eventually lead to resource depletion unless some formof management is implemented.Key Words:products.Myanmar, Hukaung Valley, rattan, sustainable harvesting, non-timber forestRattans are spiny climbing palms native to theOld World tropics. The long flexible stem, orcane, from these palms forms the basis of a thriving international industry, currently worth about6.5 billion dollars a year (ITTO 1997). Most ofthe cane entering world trade originates fromSoutheast Asia, and is collected, with few exceptions, from wild populations. Although Indonesiaand Malaysia are the largest commercial producers of rattan (Manokaran 1990), several othercountries in the region export millions of dollarsworth of rattan each year (INBAR 2004).1Received 29 September 2006; accepted 26 November 2006.Of special interest in this regard is Myanmar.Unlike many neighboring countries where thelocal rattans are relatively well-studied, e.g., LaoPDR (Evans et al. 2001; Evans et al. 2002),China (Pei et al. 1991; Yin and Zeng 1997),Thailand (Hodel 1998), and India (Renuka1992, 1995; Basu 1992), the last systematic treatment of rattans in Myanmar was done over 130years ago (Kurz 1874). A review of majorherbaria throughout the world reveals only 63rattan specimens from Myanmar (Henderson andPeters, unpublished). This lack of information isespecially noteworthy given that Myanmar contains over half of all the remaining forest in mainland Southeast Asia (FAO 1997).What we are presented with in Myanmar is aEconomic Botany, 61(1), 2007, pp. 3–13. 2007, by The New York Botanical Garden Press, Bronx, NY 10458-5126 U.S.A.

4ECONOMIC BOTANY[VOL. 6197 96 MyanmarMyanmarIndiaNamyun27 23514Shimbweyeng678Tarong9Hukuang Tiger ReserveMakawKachin StateTanaing1026 WarazugSagaing DivisionMyitkyinaChinaNamtiFig. 1. Location of the Hukaung Tiger Reserve in northern Myanmar. Ledo Road is shown as bold line. Triangles represent rattan inventory sites.vast expanse of forest that contains an undefinedquantity of an extremely valuable plant resourceabout which virtually nothing is known. As a firststep to remedy this situation, a systematic surveyof rattans was conducted in the Hukaung ValleyTiger Reserve of northern Myanmar in early2005. The objective of the survey was to document the diversity and abundance of rattanswithin the reserve, to assess the local rattan trade,and to describe the structure, regeneration status,and potential for sustainable management of wildrattan populations.Survey Route and MethodsThe Hukaung Valley Tiger Reserve (HKVTR)is located in Kachin State and the Sagaing Division of northwestern Myanmar near the borderwith India (Fig. 1). The reserve, which comprisesa large lowland plain and the foothills of thePatkai and Kumon mountain ranges to thenorthwest and southeast, respectively, extendsover 21,000 km2 of evergreen forest. It is thelargest tiger reserve, and one of the largest tractsof protected forest, in the world. The main accessto the Hukaung Valley is provided by the LedoRoad (bold line shown in Fig. 1), a 765 kmjungle track built by the Allies at the end ofWorld War II to move supplies between Indiaand China. The road was largely abandoned afterthe war, many of the bridges washed out, and it iscurrently passable only from November to Marchduring the dry season.The Ledo Road served as the main axis of therattan survey. As is shown in Fig. 1, the surveyteam started at Namyun in the northeastern corner of the reserve and proceeded south towardTanaing, making base camps every 10–15 km atdifferent elevations and substrates to collect rattans and conduct ecological fieldwork. At eachsite, the local rattans were sampled quantitativelyusing 10 m wide transects composed of contiguous 10 20 m sample plots. All rattan species ineach plot were identified, measured for height,and recorded. If it was not possible to determinethe taxonomic identity of a rattan in the field, atemporary morpho-species name was assigned.For ceaspitose or clumped species, the height ofthe clump was recorded and the number of individual stems counted on a subsample of plants.Replicate herbarium specimens were collected

2007]PETERS ET AL.: THE RATTAN TRADE OF MYANMARfor each new rattan species encountered withflowers or fruit, both in and out of the transectplots. Voucher specimens were deposited at Yangon University (RANG), the Myanmar ForestHerbarium at Yesin (RAF), Mandalay University(ASM), and The New York Botanical Garden(NY).To gather information about commercial harvesting and the local rattan trade in northernMyanmar, interviews were conducted with theowners of Three Red Stars Co., Ltd., and KhinSow Trading Co., both major rattan traders inMyitkyina, as well as with the Director of theKachin State Forest Department. An assortmentof rattan collectors, buyers, truck drivers, andlocal Kachin, Naga, and Lisu villagers were alsoconsulted about the collection and sale of rattanin northern Myanmar.ResultsRattan SpeciesPublished checklists suggest that there are from20 to 37 rattan species in Myanmar distributedamong five genera. Lace’s (1912) original list includes 20 species of Calamus, two species of Plectocomiopsis, and one species each of Korthalsia,Daemonorops, and Plectocomia. Seventy-five yearslater, the Forestry Department’s (1987) list includes 25 species of Calamus, three species ofKorthalsia, and two species each of Daemonorops,Plectocomia, and Plectocomiopsis, while Hundleyand Chit Ko Ko (1987), also from the Forest Department, report 27 species of Calamus and fourspecies of Korthalsia in Myanmar that same year.The recent checklist produced by Kress et al.(2003) mirrors the 1987 Forestry Department listwith the exception that one species of Plectocomiahas been dropped. Given that none of these compilations are specimen based and that much ofthe nomenclature is outdated, it is hard to assesshow well these lists of names reflect what’s actually in the forest.The collection results from the Hukaung Valley rattan survey are shown in Table 1. A total of15 rattan species were encountered along theLedo Road, and half of them are harvested commercially. Seven of the species are new records forMyanmar; two of the species are new to science.Based on these results, additional assessments inother areas of the country would undoubtedly reveal that Myanmar contains a higher diversity ofrattan than previously thought. The limestone is-5lands of the Myeik Archipelago in theTanintharyi Division, the Ponnyadaung Range inthe western part of the Sagaing Division, and almost any forested region in Shan State are allpromising rattan habitats that have yet to be collected. Assuming that all of the taxa listed byKress et al. (2003) actually occur in Myanmar,there are at least 42 species of rattan in this country.There is much variability in the local namesused for rattans in northern Myanmar. Althoughthe generic name for all cane is “kyein,” a givenspecies may be called by several different namesdepending on the locale and ethnic group, and thesame common name may be used to describe several different species. Rather than a one-to-onecorrespondence, most common names for rattanseem to refer to broad groups of species defined bytheir morphological characteristics or habitat requirements. For example, “ye-kyein” includes several species that tolerate swampy conditions orgrow in low-lying habitats, while “taung kyein”refers to any rattan that grows in the mountains.Similarly, “kyet-u kyein” is applied to severaldifferent species of light-colored, small cane rattan.Production and TradeThe first steps toward developing a rattan industry in Myanmar were taken in 1970 when theMinistry of Forestry opened several rattan purchasing centers in Kachin State and TanintharyiDivision and subsequently exported 15 tons ofrattan cane to Singapore (Win Myint 2004). Thelocal rattan trade continued to grow over the nexttwo decades, and by the early 1990s Myanmarwas exporting an average of 12,000 metric tonsof rattan each year valued at over 3.6 million dollars (INBAR 2004). The great majority of thismaterial, i.e. over 95%, is sold to China.Annual production data for rattan in Myanmar from 1991 to 2003 are shown in Fig. 2. Inaddition to totals for the entire country (histogram), production data for Kachin State andSagaing Division are also graphed (line plot) toshow the relative contribution of northern Myanmar. In terms of total rattan production, there isa notable drop in the amount of rattan collectedafter 1996. An average of 60.3 million rattanscanes per year were collected during the intervalfrom 1991 to 1996, while less than a third of thisquantity was collected in subsequent years. Although the abrupt drop in 1997 is undoubtedly areflection of the economic crisis that occurred

6ECONOMIC BOTANY[VOL. 61Table 1. Rattan species recorded in Hukaung Valley Tiger Reserve, northern Myanmar.Species reported as new records are not included in Kress et al. (2003).SpeciesLocal NameVoucherNotesCalamusacanthospathus Griff.Calamus erectusthaing kyeinRoxb.Calamus flagellummyauk chi kyeinGriff.(monkey dung cane)Calamus floribundusye-kyein (water cane)Griff.Henderson et al.3151 NY*Henderson et al.3137 NYHenderson et al.3146 NYHenderson et al.3177 NYNoncommercial; new record for MyanmarCalamus gracilisRoxb.kyet-u kyein (chickenegg cane)Henderson et al.3140 NYCalamus gurubaBuch.-Hamkyein-ni (red cane)Henderson et al.3118 NYCalamus henryanusBecc.Calamus leptospadixGriff.Calamus cf.nambariensis Becc.taung kyein(mountain cane)Henderson et al.3158 NYHenderson et al.3165 NYHenderson et al.3143 NYCalamus palustrisGriff.yamataHenderson et al.3128 NYCalamus sp. nov.htin phuHenderson et al.3125 NYHenderson et al.3174 NYHenderson et al.3173 NYkadinCalamus sp. nov.Calamus tenuis (water cane)Calamus cf. wailongtaung kyeinS.J Pei & S.Y. Chen(mountain cane)Henderson et al.3155 NYPlectocomia assamicaGriff.Henderson et al.3152 NYsin kyein (elephant cane)NoncommercialNoncommercial; cane is brittle and splitseasily; new record for MyanmarImportant commercial species; used fortying log rafts; split cane used for making furniture, handicrafts, and household utensilsCommercial species, popular with foreigntraders; can be split very fine and hasfew nodes; used for making furniture;quality similar to that of sega (C. caesiusBl.) caneCommercial species with reddish sheath;split cane used for making furniture;used for tying teak logs to make raftsNoncommercial; new record forMyanmarNoncommercial; new record for MyanmarImportant commercial species; heavilyexploited in Hukaung Valley; largecane; new record for MyanmarImportant commercial species resilientand durable, large cane; similar to C.manan Miq.; used for framing furnitureand making household utensilsNoncommercial; stems split andused locally for weaving; new speciesNoncommercial; new speciesCommercial species; split cane used formaking furniture, mats, and baskets;heavily exploitedCommercial species; used for furnitureand basketry; new record for MyanmarNoncommercial; massive cane occasionallyused to make bed frames and other largeitems of furniture*Herbarium labels for the voucher specimens contained the names of all seven members of the survey team: A. Henderson, C.Peters, U Myint Maung, U Saw Lwin, U Tin Maung Ohn, U Kyaw Lwin, and U Tun Shaung.throughout Asia during this year, the inability ofthe Myanmar rattan trade to return to previousproduction levels in later years suggests that otherfactors are at work here. Excessive harvesting andresource shortage may be partially responsible forthis pattern, but the fact that production levelshave consistently averaged about 20 millioncanes/year, rather than continually declined, suggests that economic policies and structural impediments may be more to blame.The production data shown for northernMyanmar follows the same general pattern as thenational average and usually represent about halfof all of the rattan harvested in the country (Fig.

2007]PETERS ET AL.: THE RATTAN TRADE OF MYANMAR790All Myanmar80Kachin State Sagaing Division70Rattan Canes 7199819992000200120022003YearsFig. 2. Annual production data for rattan in Myanmar. Line plot shows production totals for Kachin Stateand Sagaing Division in northern Myanmar (adapted from data presented in Win Myint 2004).2). The line for the northern region, however, deviates from this trend during the period from1993 to 1995, when there was a notable drop inthe number of rattan canes harvested. This dropin productivity may have been caused by the political instability that characterized the region during these years. With the exception of the majortowns and railroad corridor, Kachin State hasbeen virtually independent from Myanmar sincethe early 1960s due to the activities of the KachinIndependence Army (KIA). Increasingly violentclashes between the KIA and the Myanmar armycame to a head in 1994 when the army launcheda major offensive and seized the local jade mineswhich were a major source of funding for the insurgency (Smith 1999). A cease-fire agreementwith the government was signed shortly thereafter,and the improved security and access to localforests undoubtedly stimulated rattan harvesting.The low-level, sporadic collection of rattan byvillagers for subsistence use is unregulated inMyanmar, while commercial collection requires alicense from the Forest Department. These licenses are granted based on productivity “targets”that have been established for different regionsand species. Last year, for example, the officialgovernment target for the entire country was23.4 million canes, with 4.2 and 2.5 million canetargets for Kachin State and Sagaing Division, respectively (Forest Department 2005). Given thelack of available inventory data about wild rattanpopulations and the existing taxonomic difficulties with many local species, it is unclear howthese targets are actually derived. Once a licensehas been granted, commercial collectors are required to pay a tax on each rattan cane harvestedequal to about 25% of the prevailing marketprice for the resource.Given the bad road conditions, the prevalenceof malaria, and the difficulty of drying cane dur-

8ECONOMIC BOTANY[VOL. 61Fig. 3. Rattan collectors in the Hukaung Tiger Reserve, northern Myanmar. Top left. Stockpiling rattancanes in a forest landing. Top right. Tying rattan into bundles of 30 canes. Bottom. Trucks on the Ledo Roadloaded with canes for transport out of the reserve.

2007]PETERS ET AL.: THE RATTAN TRADE OF MYANMARing the rainy season, the harvest of rattan in theHukaung Valley is limited to a brief four-monthperiod during the dry season. If the rattan isabundant and accessible, a collector can reportedly harvest up to 30 canes/day; the normal rateis about 15 canes/day. After collection, the cane istransported to a landing (Fig 3A), usually locatednear the road and the camp where the collectorsstay, where it is trimmed and tied into bundles of30 canes (Fig. 3B). Once a sufficient quantity ofrattan has been collected, the material is loadedinto trucks (Fig. 3C) for transport out of theHukaung Valley. Each of the five trucks shown inFig. 3 is carrying 100 bundles of Calamus cf.nambariensis cane (3,000 canes total). The collectors had been harvesting and stockpiling this rattan for almost three months.The great majority of the rattan cane collectedin the Hukaung Valley is sent to Myitkyina whereit must be processed and dried before it can beexported. The most common form of processingis to soak the green cane in boiling diesel forabout 20 minutes to kill insect pests, brush itwith sawdust, and then spread it out to cure inthe sun. Sodium hydroxide is occasionally used tobleach the cane of some species, e.g. C. palustris.The processed material is then trucked to theChina where it is carefully inspected, weighed,and sold.Conversations with rattan buyers and collectors inevitably ended with a comment about howrattan production had been declining in recentyears. Buyers felt that it was getting harder andharder to motivate people to collect rattan, asmore money could be made working in localgold mines. Collectors thought that rattan supplies were diminishing, and several reminiscedabout the old days when it was possible to findcanes over 200 m long. There was a general consensus among all parties that there used to be alot more rattan in the Hukaung Valley than thereis now.Current Supplies of RattanThe results from the inventory transects revealed that the current density of harvestable rattan in the Hukaung Valley ranges from 15 to2515 canes 4 m long/ha with an average densityof 396.1 canes 4 m long/ha (Table 2). Althoughthe largest number of canes was recorded in alowland, seasonally-flooded site, rattan densitywas not related to either elevation or latitude. Interms of commercial species, local forests contain9an average of 40.5 canes 4 m long/ ha; Calamuscf. nambariensis and C. gracilis were the mostabundant commercial species with 17.5 and 12.2canes 4 m long/ha., respectively. It is importantto note that these density data are all from foreststhat are being actively harvested.Population data for commercial species that include seedlings and pre–merchantable canes provide a useful assessment of what future suppliesof rattan in the Hukaung Valley might look like.Size-class diagrams for five commercial species arepresented in Fig. 4; a separate diagram for transect 2 is also included to contrast the distributions of commercial and noncommercial speciesand illustrate the population impacts of harvesting. The histograms for each species were constructed using the results from all transects andthen adjusting the totals to a per hectare basis.Several points of interest are apparent in Fig. 4.First, the population structure of all commercialspecies exhibits an inverse J-shaped distributionin which there are exponentially more smallplants than large plants. Although total population size varies greatly from one species to thenext, all of the rattans appear to be actively regenerating themselves. Second, there is a notable reduction in the number of canes in the merchantable size classes, i.e. 4 m tall, of allcommercial species, this pattern clearly reflectingthe selective mortality of commercial harvesting.Finally, as is shown in the histogram from transect 2, noncommercial species have an obviouscompetitive advantage when growing with commercial species. Noncommercial species—mostlyC. flagellum in this case—exhibit the greatestnumber of individuals in all size classes, and themarketable classes are almost exclusively occupiedby these taxa. That said, transect 2 was established behind the landing shown in Fig. 3,where collectors had been harvesting C. cf. nambariensis cane for almost three months, and therewere still 50 merchantable canes per hectarerecorded in the inventory. There may indeed beless rattan in Hukaung Valley than there used tobe, but there is still a lot of harvestable cane inthe forest.Potential for Sustainable UseThe persistence of commercial rattan in northern Myanmar after decades of intensive exploitation seems to be the result of both ecological andmarket factors. From an ecological perspective, allof the rattan populations surveyed appear to be

TOTALS:All rattansCommercialspeciesSpeciesC. flagellumC. floribundusC. gracilisC. henryanusC. cfnambariensisC. palustrisC. sp. nov.C. cf. wailongP. assamicaElevation (m)Location352015101071085305035595880N26 52'E96 12'10402N26 54'E96 13'11522211821N26 51'E96 12'329—29610N26 49'E96 12'44040406140855585510N26 45'E96 13'Transect No.550N26 47'E96 12'560151545220N26 43'E96 11'7107582541833190N26 41'E96 13'82515100520752415200N26 30'E96 39'9310—70240285N26 03'E96 43'10Table 2. Number of marketable ( 4.0 m long) rattan canes recorded in 10 200 m transect in the Hukaung Valley Tiger Reserve, Myanmar.Density values are expressed as canes/hectare.10ECONOMIC BOTANY[VOL. 61

2007]PETERS ET AL.: THE RATTAN TRADE OF MYANMAR100Calamus gracilisN 1507575011Calamus cf.nambariensisN 865500502502500Number of Canes/Ha500Calamus palustrisN 4343752001502501001255000450Calamus floribundusN 787300Calamus cf. wailongN 000 112345Height Class (m)6 112345Height Class (m)6 Fig. 4. Size-class histograms for populations of five commercial rattan species in the Hukaung Tiger Reserve,northern Myanmar. Data represent pooled results from all transects. Histogram at lower right shows the distribution of commercial and noncommercial species in transect 2.recruiting enough new seedlings each year to replace the mortality of the adult canes harvested.This is an encouraging finding, because it suggests that the local rattans have yet to be irreparably overexploited. Of even greater long-term importance, however, is the simple reality that noone wants to buy a rattan cane that is less than4 m long. Collectors sweep through the forestand selectively removed only the largest canes of agiven species, which, in most cases, represents lessthan 5% of the total number of stems in thatpopulation. This material will subsequently be replenished by the growth of individuals in thesmaller-size classes if the population is given sufficient time to recover.In terms of the compatibility of commercialrattan harvesting and tiger conservation, it is important to note that the great majority of the rattan harvested from the Hukaung Valley Tiger Reserve comes from a 1.0 to 3.0 km strip on eitherside of the Ledo Road. The current price of rattan is simply not high enough to motivate collectors to go further into the forest. Relative to thetotal size of the reserve, the area from which rattan is harvested is actually quite small. This samearea experiences frequent human traffic and is

12ECONOMIC BOTANYcomposed of forest that has been disturbed tovarying degrees—a very productive habitat forrattan, but not for many of the animal speciesprotected in the reserve. Operationally, the tigersand the rattan collectors seem have chosen to exploit different habitats in the Hukaung Valley.ConclusionsThe forests of northern Myanmar contain anabundance of rattan resources with great potential for sustainable use. The current pattern ofrattan exploitation, however, is largely uncontrolled and will eventually lead to resource depletion unless some form of management is implemented. To avoid this depletion, managementactivities should be initiated while natural populations of important commercial species are stillintact and actively regenerating.The results from the present study suggest twooptions for the sustainable management of rattanin the Hukaung Valley. The first option would bethe controlled exploitation of natural rattan populations along designated sections of the LedoRoad. The amount of rattan removed each yearfrom these populations should be based on reliable harvest quotas derived from periodic inventories and yield studies of all commercial species(sensu Peters 1996). Enrichment treatments couldbe employed as necessary to increase the abundance of particularly valuable species. The secondoption would involve the cultivation of selectedcommercial species in small-scale agroforestry systems at the village level. Cultivation effortsshould start small by initiating limited demonstration plantings in a few communities.In each case, management activities offer anopportunity to increase local livelihoods, to conserve the rattan resource, and, perhaps most importantly, to more closely engage local communities in the stewardship of the Hukaung ValleyTiger Reserve. The next phase of our rattan research in Myanmar will specifically address theissue of community management and sustainableharvesting.AcknowledgmentsThe authors would especially like to thank theMyanmar Forest Department for granting permission to conduct the rattan survey. TheWildlife Conservation Society (WCS) played akey role in developing the research, and we gratefully acknowledge the support of U Than Myintand U Saw Tun Khaing in the WCS Yangon of-[VOL. 61fice, and Dr. Alan Rabinowitz and Dr. Josh Ginsberg from WCS New York. A warm thank-you toall members of the survey team including field assistants, cooking crew, and elephant handlers. Financial support was provided by the Committeefor Research and Exploration of the National Geographic Society and the Center for Environmental Research and Conservation (CERC) at Columbia University.Literature CitedBasu, S. 1992. Rattans (canes) in India. A monographic revision. Rattan Information Center, KualaLumpur, Malaysia.Evans, T., K. Sengdala, O. Viengham, and B. Thammavong. 2001. A field guide to the rattans of LaoPDR. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.———, K. Sengdala, B. Thammavong, O. Viengham,and J. Dransfield. 2

ECONOMIC BOTANY Vol. 61, no. 1, pp. 1-108 Spring 2007 Economic Botany Vol. 61 No. 1 Spring 2007 Devoted to Past, Present, and Future Uses of Plants by People Published for The Society for Economic Botany by The New York Botanical Garden Press Issued 30 March 2007

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