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Does wildlife play a role in the epidemiology of livestock diseases? Preliminary results and management implications of a survey of perceptions and practices of farmers living in a protected area of Bhutan

Choden K., Thongyan S., Tulayakul P., De Garine-Wichatitsky M.. 2018. Journal Kasetsart Veterinarians, 28 (1) : p. 39-55.

A community-based study was conducted to assess the knowledge, attitudes and perceptions regarding livestock and wildlife health issuesof local people depending on their proximityto protected areas in Bhutan. Two sub-districts located inside and outside Jigme Dorji National Park were selected for comparison. Participants were selected by applying snowball-sampling method. Data was collected through use of both qualitative and quantitative approaches invo lvin g individual interviews, group meetings, personal observations and active participation in villagers'activities. Key areas of enquiry included awareness and perceptions of the role-played by wildlife in the epidemiology of livestock diseases. The study found that most of the respondents reported owning at least one livestock. In terms ofveterinary health care services, animal owners found it was very easy to access and the only concern was the need for additional staff (20%). Livestock inside the parh were reported to share the same grazing area and water with wildlife more frequently than those of outside the park. People were generally aware of livestock animals and wildiife sharing some diseases (55.2%). The study highlights the need for awareness and for community engagement and participation in dealing with health issues of livestock and wildlife.

Mots-clés : bhoutan

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