Adult dragonflies as human food in the Nagaland State, India
Notulae odonatologicae , Volume 1 - Issue 8 p. 137- 138
In eastern and southern Asia dragonflies arc relatively often used as materia medica in the traditional pharmacology, e.g. in Japan (S. ASAHINA, 1974, Odonatologica 3: 5-12), China (T.-h. YANG, 1976, Investigations on the insects used for medicine in Chinese pharmacology. PhD thesis, Univ. Taipei; — B.E. READ, 1977. Chinese materia medica, Vol. 2. Southern Materials Center. Taipei), and in Tibet (RECHUNG R1NPOCHE JAMPAL KUNZANG, 1973, Tibetan medicine illustrated in original texts, Wellcome Inst. Hist. Med., London; cf. also M.A.J.E. KIAUTA, 1977, Odonalologica 6: 69-76). but little is known as to their use as human food. As an item of the human diet dragonflies were reported from Sumatra (J.C. VAN DER MEER MOHR, 1965, Em. her.. Amst. 25: 101-107) and from Thailand (W.S. BRISTOWE, 1932. Trans, ent. Soc. Lond. 80: 387- -404). Recently, Capl. Dr. Arun Kumar Tyagi, A.M.C., India has notified the author about dragonfly consumption by the Angami Nagas, a tribe living in the East-lndian state of Nagaland. The adult dragonflies are reported to be sold there in some villages on the India-Burma border, such as Kheamungan and Yemchungar, and in some places in the interior. In the market of the state capital, the city of Kohima, 8-12 specimens are offered for sale at the price of I.— Rupee. Often dragonflies are sold along with various other edible insects and other small animals. They are eaten as a desert, or are used, in semi-dried condition, as a refreshment.
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