The totora probably originates from the Atacama and Titicaca highlands, not only has distribution and abundance in Lake Titicaca, but also in Lake Poopó or Aullagas in the department of Oruro Bolívia, today the great Atacama desert.
The scientific name of the cattail was subject to change: Scirpus totora, Scirpus titikakensis, Scirpus califomicus. In the year 1980 two different scientific names appeared simultaneously; the study carried out in Bolivia, suggests the name of Schoenoplectus tatora instead, the study carried out in Peru, mentions the genus Scirpus with two species: Scirpus totora and Scirpus sp.
In the Uros, life revolves around water and the reed plant as both are decisive for subsisting and living in the lake. The reed in particular has different uses such as the following mentioned: