We used data on feeding practices and domestic animal health gathered from 207 Bangladeshi villages to identify any association between grazing dropped fruit found on the ground or owners directly feeding bat-or bird-bitten fruit and animal health. We compared mortality and morbidity in domestic animals using a mixed effects model controlling for village clustering, herd size, and proxy measures of household wealth. Thirty percent of household heads reported that their animals grazed on dropped fruit and 20% reported that they actively fed bitten fruit to their domestic herds. Household heads allowing their cattle to graze on dropped fruit were more likely to report an illness within their herd (adjusted prevalence ratio 1.17, 95% CI 1.02-1.31). Household heads directly feeding goats bitten fruit were more likely to report illness (adjusted prevalence ratio 1.35, 95% CI 1.16-1.57) and deaths (adjusted prevalence ratio 1.64, 95% CI 1.13-2.4). Reporting of illnesses and deaths among goats rose as the frequency of feeding bitten fruit increased. One possible explanation for this finding is the transmission of bat pathogens to domestic animals via bitten fruit consumption.
- Bat-and bird-bitten fruit
- Domestic animals
- Zoonotic disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis