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Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2012;2012:126938. doi: 10.1155/2012/126938. Epub 2011 Dec 14.

The trade in medicinal animals in northeastern Brazil.

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Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal da Paraíba, 58051-900 João Pessoa, PB, Brazil.


Over the centuries, a significant part of the Brazilian fauna is widely sold, more specifically in retail stores or street markets. The objective was to characterize the sale of medicinal animals in five large northeast cities. Information about the sale of zootherapeutic items was obtained in the cities of Aracaju-SE, Fortaleza-CE, Maceio-AL, Recife-PE, and Salvador-BA. A total of 68 animal species were sold for medicinal purposes in the cities studied; these are the first results on the use and sale of zootherapeutics in the markets of Aracaju, Fortaleza, and Salvador and first recorded on the medicinal use of the Achatina fulica, Trachycardium muricatum, Philodryas olfersii, Desmodus rotundus, and Leptodactylus vastus. Knowledge of the fauna utilized popular medicine is indispensable for conservation, demonstrating that research on this subject is necessary to determine appropriate practices for the management of the fauna.

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