Skip to main content

Table 1 Medicinal uses of animals and animal parts in traditional therapy by the Biate tribe of Dima Hasao district

From: Indigenous knowledge of zootherapeutic use among the Biate tribe of Dima Hasao District, Assam, Northeastern India

Scientific Name/Family English name Part used Dried/Fresh Disease treated Method of preparation, use and dosage of medicine Used Singly/combination with others Side effects reported Fidelity level (%)
Class: Reptilia         
Ophiophagus hannah (Cant. 1836) /Elapidae King Cobra Gall bladder Dried Snake bite Eaten/swallowed whole. 1 whole piece once. Singly None 33
Python molurus (Linn., 1758) /Pythonidae Python Gall bladder Dried Diabetes Eaten/swallowed whole. 1 whole piece once every year. Singly None 56
Gall bladder Dried Snake bite Eaten/swallowed whole. 1 whole piece once. Singly None 38
Flesh Dried or fresh Seizure Eaten cooked with vegetables. No particular dosage. Singly or in combination with vegetables None 90
Fat Fermented Sprain Applied locally Singly None 38
Fat Fermented Piles Applied locally in piles Singly None 82
Varanus bengalensis (Daudin, 1802) /Varanidae Monitor Lizard Fat Fermented Burns Applied locally Singly None 61
Flesh Dried Jaundice Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly None 54
Gekko gecko (Linn. 1758) /Gekkonidae Tokay Gecko Flesh Dried Impotency Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly None 38
Melanochelys trijuga (Schw.1812) /Geoemydidae Indian Pond Terrapin Flesh Fresh/Dried Allergy Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly None 24
Class : Malacostraca         
Paratelphusa sp. (Alcok, 1919) /Paratelphisidae Fresh water crab Whole Fresh Jaundice Crabs (especially small ones) are crushed to pulp. The juice extracted is mixed with a little water and boiled till it becomes half of the quantity and then taken. It is often cooked along with banana flower. No particular dosage. Singly None 96
Class: Gastropoda         
Cryptozona sp (Moerch, 1872) /Ariophantidae Snail Whole Fresh Rheumatism and Sciatica Inserted inside a banana for ease of ingestion and swallowed whole. 1 every day for 1 week. Singly or in combination with edibles None 36
Lymnaea sp. (Lam. 1822) /Lymnaeidae Water snail Flesh Fresh Jaundice Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly or in combination with vegetables None 73
Class : Insect         
Cimex lectularius (Linn.1758) /Cimicidae Bed bugs Whole Fresh Malaria 3 bedbugs are swallowed whole, daily for 1 week. It is often inserted in a banana for ease of ingestion. Singly None 27
Periplanata americana (Linn. 1758) /Blattidae Cockroach Whole Dried Tuberculosis Crushed and eaten. 3 every week for 1 month. Singly or in combination with edibles None 2
Class: Aves         
Gallus gallus (Linn. 1758) /Phasianidae Jungle fowl Fat Fermented Burns Applied locally. Singly None 83
Corvus macrorhynchos (Wagler, 1827) /Corvidae Jungle crow Flesh Dried or fresh Health tonic for the aged Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly or with vegetables None 82
Rhyticeros undulatus (Shaw, 1811) /Bucerotidae Wreathed Hornbill Fat Fermented Burns Applied locally. Singly None 45
Passer domesticus (Linn. 1758) /Passeridae House Sparrow Brain Fresh Impotency Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly or with vegetables None 27
Myophonus caeruleus (Scopoli, 1786) /Turdidae Blue whistling Thrush Flesh Dried Meat allergy Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly or with vegetables None 37
Buceros bicornis (Linn. 1758) /Bucerotidae Great Hornbill Fat Fermented Arthritis Applied locally. Singly None 60
Upupa epops (Linn. 1758) /Upupidae Hoopoe Flesh Dried Gall bladder stone Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Cooked with Marsdenia sp None 75
Class: Mammalia         
Manis crassicaudata (E. Geof. 1803) /Manidae Indian Pangolin Scales Dried Hook worm 1 scale, crushed to powder and taken with water. Singly None 87
Canis aureus (Linn. 1758) /Canidae Golden Jackal Flesh Dried Tuberculosis Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly or with vegetables None 48
Flesh Fresh Joint pain Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly or with vegetables None 44
Gall bladder Dried Malaria Swallowed whole. 1 whole piece once. Singly None 36
Muntiacus muntjak (Zimm. 1780) /Cervidae Barking Deer Flesh Dried or fresh Easy conception Cooked and eaten. No particular dosage. Singly or with vegetables None 57
Eonycteris spelaea (Dobson, 1871) /Pteropodidae Bat Flesh Dried Eneuresis Cooked and eaten. No dosage Singly None 81
Melursus ursinus (Shaw, 1791) /Ursidae Sloth Bear Gall bladder Dried Diabetes Swallowed whole atleast twice in a year Singly None 78
Gall bladder Dried Easy delivery of a child Swallowed whole before delivery. 1 whole piece once. Singly Decreases lactation which becomes normal again after 3–6 days. 93
Ursus thibetanus (Cuvier, 1823) /Ursidae Himalayan Black Bear Gall bladder Dried Diabetes Swallowed whole atleast twice in a year. Singly None 82
Gall bladder Dried Easy delivery of a child Swallowed whole before delivery. 1 whole piece once. Singly Decreases lactation which becomes normal again after 3–6 days. 89
Hoolock hoolock (Harlan, 1834) /Hylobatidae Hoolock Gibbon Gall bladder Dried Diabetes Swallowed whole. 1 whole piece once. Singly None 87
Flesh Dried Tonic for pregnant women It is cooked with vegetables and taken. No dosage In combination with different vegetables None 80
Brain Fresh Tonic for pregnant women Cooked and eaten. Believed to be an excellent health tonic especially for a pregnant women and her unborn child. No dosage Singly None 68
Bone Dried Rheumatism A piece of bone is usually tied around the foot, leg or waist Singly None 97
Skull bone Dried Dizziness Piece of skull bone is tied to the head. Singly None 3
Hand Dried Hernia Smoked dried hand is used to rub down the affected area. Singly None 16
Capricornis sumatraensis (Bechstein, 1799) /Bovidae Mainland Serow Front foot Dried Joint pains, rheumatism The affected area is usually hammered gently every day Singly None 74
Urine Fresh Diabetes ~ 5 ml once in a month. Singly None 24
Nycticebus coucang (Boddaert, 1785) /Lorisidae Slow Loris Fur Dried Cuts & wounds and bed sore Applied locally Singly None 31
Canis lupus familiaris (Linn. 1758) /Canidae Dog Blood Fresh warm Chronic malaria ~ 100 ml of fresh blood is drunk while still warm Singly None 58
Blood Fresh warm Epilepsy ~ 50 ml fresh blood mixed with alcohol (preferably local rice beer) is taken once. Singly Slight dizziness and nausea 10
Flesh Dried or fresh Epilepsy Cooked and eaten. No dosage In combination with different vegetables None 38
Macaca assamensis (McClelland, 1840) /Cercopithecidae The Assamese Macaque Flesh Dried Tonic for pregnant women Cooked and eaten. No dosage In combination with different vegetables None 61
Brain Fresh Tonic for pregnant women Cooked and eaten. Believed to be an excellent health tonic especially for a pregnant women and her child. No dosage Singly None 27
Gall bladder Dried Diabetes Swallowed whole. 1 whole piece once. Singly None 77
Smoked dried hand Dried Mumps It is used to tap gently in and around the affected area. Singly None 63
Hystrix indica (Kerr, 1792) /Hystricidae Indian Crested Porcupine Flesh Dried or fresh Easy delivery of a child Cooked and eaten. No dosage In combination with different vegetables None 38
Elephas maximus (Linn,1758) /Elephantidae Asian Elephant Teeth Dried or fresh Toothache The thick hair on the tail is used to pick the affected tooth. Singly None 4
Lutrogale perspicillata (Geoffroy, 1826) /Mustelidae Smooth coated otter Flesh Dried or fresh Fish bone stuck in the throat Soup prepared is taken slowly. No dosage Cooked with lady’s finger. None 3
Fur Dried or fresh Burns Applied locally till it heals Singly None 2
Trachypithecus pileatus (Blyth, 1843) /Cercopithecidae Capped langur Tongue Dried Food poisoning Cooked and eaten. No dosage In combination with different vegetables None 8
Sus scrofa (Linn. 1758) /Suidae Wild Boar Fat Fresh Hair care Fats are fried to produce oil which is applied daily. Singly None 45
Trachypithecus cristatus (Raffles, 1821) /Cercopithecidae Silvered Leaf Monkey Gall bladder Dried Diabetes & High Blood Pressure At least 3 pieces are eaten, one per day at intervals of a few days to lower diabetes. The same applies for high blood pressure. Singly None 82