, 13:245 | Cite as


Self-Medication in Wild Animals
  • Rajasekar Raman
  • Sripathi Kandula
General Article


The study of parasites and their likely influence on optimal foraging and mate-selection in animals has attracted much attention in recent times. The possible effects of parasites on the host include the manipulation of host behaviour by parasites and the emergence of host behavioural adaptations for protecting against parasitism. Self-medication in wild animals is believed to be the behavioural adaptation evolved primarily against parasites and associated diseases. In this article, we have briefly reviewed some types of unusual behaviour observed inmammals, birds and insectswhich can be considered as self-medication.


Parasitism fitness phytochemicals self-medication secondary metabolites geophagy 

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Copyright information

© Indian Academy of Sciences 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Animal Behaviour and Physiology School of Biological SciencesMadurai Kamaraj UniversityMaduraiIndia

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