Poultry slaughtering practices in rural communities of bangladesh and risk of avian influenza transmission: A qualitative study

Nadia Ali Rimi, Rebeca Sultana, Kazi Ishtiak-Ahmed, Salah Uddin Khan, M. A.Yushuf Sharker, Rashid Uz Zaman, Eduardo Azziz-Baumgartner, Emily S. Gurley, Nazmun Nahar, Stephen P. Luby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Slaughtering sick poultry is a risk factor for human infection with highly pathogenic avian influenza and is a common practice in Bangladesh. This paper describes human exposures to poultry during slaughtering process and the customs and rituals influencing these practices in two Bangladeshi rural communities. In 2009, we conducted 30 observations to observe slaughtering practices and 110 in-depth and short interviews and 36 group discussions to explore reasons behind those practices. The villagers reported slaughtering 103 poultry, including 20 sick poultry during 2 months. During different stages of slaughtering, humans, the environment, healthy poultry, and other animals were exposed to poultry blood and body parts. Women performed most of the slaughtering tasks, including evisceration. Defeathering required the most time and involved several persons. During festivals, ceremonies, and rituals, many people gathered and participated in the slaughtering of poultry. Exposure to poultry slaughtering created numerous opportunities for potential avian influenza transmission. Strategies that can be further tested to determine if they reduce the risk of transmission include skinning the carcasses of sick poultry, using hot water for defeathering and cleaning, using a bucket to contain slaughtering blood and carcass, burying the offal and encouraging handwashing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-93
Number of pages11
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Avian influenza
  • Bangladesh
  • focused ethnography
  • poultry slaughtering
  • qualitative research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


Dive into the research topics of 'Poultry slaughtering practices in rural communities of bangladesh and risk of avian influenza transmission: A qualitative study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this