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Tanzania Journal of Health Research

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Assessment of human-snake interaction and its outcomes in Monduli District, northern Tanzania

Hezron E. Nonga, Alex Haruna

Abstract


Background: Human-snake interactions has always been associated with different outcomes. This cross-sectional study was conducted to assess the human-snake interaction and its outcomes in Monduli District, northern Tanzania.

Methods: Data collection was done through questionnaires, key informants interviews and record review of snake bite cases at Meserani Snake Park Clinic.

Results: Most people (97%) in the study area had ever encountered snakes mostly in livestock grazing areas (41.5%) especially at noon hours. The common types of snakes were the black ones (44.6%) and most of these (58%) were non-poisonous species. Twelve species of snake were reported to be found in the area while 22 species dominated by Psammophis s. subtaeniatus and Eryx colubrinus loveridgei were under zoo environment. Fifty seven people were bitten by snakes in the study area in 2012 and majority of the cases were recorded between February and April. It was further reported that many people (92.3%) feel worried whenever they encounter snakes and the reaction is to kill it as a means of control. This was because snakes were regarded as dangerous creatures and were not used in any traditional practices (81.5%).

Conclusion: There was a hostile interactions between human and snakes and always humans hated snakes and, killed them whenever were encountered. Basic educations on snake conservation have to be provided to the community to avoid unnecessary killing of snakes.




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