The popular zootherapy in Bahia state: registration of new animal species used as medicinal resources

Eraldo Medeiros Costa Neto About the author

This article deals with the use of animals as medicinal resources in Bahia state, Northeastern Brazil. The data come from a processional evaluation of academic performance, since it was an exercise requested by the professor of the discipline Ethnobiology (2007.2 semester) to the students of the course Bahia State Teachers' Undergraduation of Feira de Santana State University. They were asked to make a brief survey, in their respective cities, on the use of animals as medicines. Forty-one students, from 21 cities of the country of Bahia State, have participated with data. A total of 95 animals (common names) were recorded, from which 17 are new additions to the list of medicinal animal species already published. The recording of the use of animals as folk medicines in the state of Bahia provides a significant contribution to the phenomenon of zootherapy, because it opens a space to debate about conservation biology, health public policies, sustainable management of natural resources, bioprospection, and patent. It is necessary to carry out more ethnozoological studies both to comprehend the true importance of zootherapy to the traditional communities and to develop some strategies of sustainable management and use of animal species, especially for those under risk of extinction.

Zootherapy; Ethnozoology; Folk medicine; Natural resource; Sustainability

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