, Volume 40, Issue 5, pp 781-787
Date: 05 Oct 2012

A Survey of Wild Collection and Cultivation of Indigenous Species in Iceland

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Introduction

Hotspots of bio and cultural diversity have been and continue to be the focus of conservation efforts and ethnobotany explorations worldwide (Hoffman and Gallaher 2007) as they harbor such a great number of species and ethnicities. However, the loss of native species and habitats is also taking place in “cold spots” with low bio (Kassam 2008) and cultural diversity such as Iceland. This study is based on surveys with a select group of Icelandic people who utilize native species of plants as well as fungi and marine algae (e.g., chefs, farmers, gardeners and herbalists). It covers the use of native and naturalized introduced species and uses the terms, materials, and methods of ethnobotany to document, describe and explain these uses (Alexiades 1996). Ethnobotany’s rich and rigorous history, diverse and growing methodologies (Albuquerque and Hanazaki 2009) and potential for deepening the understanding of relationships between people and biota (Martin 1995; Balée and Brown 19