Monday, 28 March 2011 19:39

Case Study: Elephants

Written by
Rate this item
(0 votes)

The largest draught animal is the elephant, but its role is slowly becoming one of tradition rather than necessity. Two decades ago, 4,000 Asian elephants were used for logging in Thailand, but the forests there have been clear-cut and mechanization has displaced the elephant. However, they are still used in Myanmar, where elephant logging is prevalent. Logging companies frequently lease working elephants from their owners, who are typically urban businessmen.

The elephant handler (or trainer) is called an oozie in Myanmar and a mahout in India and Sri Lanka. The trainer mounts a saddle—a thick pad of leaves and bark—on the elephant’s back to protect its sensitive spine from the dragging gear, or tack, used in pulling logs. The trainer sits on the elephant’s neck as it uses its trunk, tusks, feet, mouth and forehead to accomplish its daily chores. A well-trained elephant in logging work will respond to more than 30 vocal commands and 90 pressure points on its body from a skilled handler. They work until 2:45 every afternoon, then the oozie scrubs the elephant in water with coconut halves for up to an hour. The oozie then feeds the elephant salted, cooked rice and hobbles and releases it to feed in the forest at night. At about 4:00 a.m., the oozie locates the elephant by unique tones of a bell that is attached to the elephant (Schmidt 1997).

Elephant bulls are rarely held in captivity, and cows are traditionally released to be bred in the wild. Artificial insemination is also used to breed elephants. Bull elephants donate semen to an elephant-sized artificial cow. It is impossible to observe visually the cow in oestrus (three times per year), so weekly samples of blood are taken for progesterone analysis. When a cow is in oestrus, she is bred by injecting semen into her vagina with a long, flexible pneumatic insemination tube.

Several hazards are associated with elephant handling; they arise from elephants’ size, the massive objects of their work and their behaviour. Mounting the tack on the elephant and manipulating logging gear exposes the handler to injury hazards. In addition, the handler is exposed to falls from the elephant’s neck. The potential for injury is aggravated by the logging operations, which include carrying, pushing, pulling and stacking; teak logs can weigh as much as 1,360 kg. The elephant’s behaviour may be unpredictable and cause injury to its handler. Captive bulls are very dangerous and are difficult to contain. Breeding bulls are particularly dangerous. A working bull elephant in Sri Lanka has been reported to have killed nine mahouts. He was retained after each death, however, because of his value to his owners (Schmidt 1997).

Some elephants will respond only to their trainer. The principal method for controlling unpredictable elephants is to allow only their oozie to handle them. Elephants are creatures of habit, so trainers should maintain a daily routine. The afternoon scrubbing by the trainer has been found to be critical in establishing a bond with the elephant. Maintaining the trainer’s dominance is another safeguard against unsafe elephant behaviour.

The swimmers who carry blood samples to a laboratory for progesterone analysis are exposed to a particularly dangerous task: they swim across rivers during the monsoon season. This drowning hazard can be corrected by providing laboratory services near the working elephants.

 

Back

Read 3697 times Last modified on Tuesday, 08 November 2011 00:23

" DISCLAIMER: The ILO does not take responsibility for content presented on this web portal that is presented in any language other than English, which is the language used for the initial production and peer-review of original content. Certain statistics have not been updated since the production of the 4th edition of the Encyclopaedia (1998)."

Contents

Preface
Part I. The Body
Part II. Health Care
Part III. Management & Policy
Part IV. Tools and Approaches
Part V. Psychosocial and Organizational Factors
Part VI. General Hazards
Part VII. The Environment
Part VIII. Accidents and Safety Management
Part IX. Chemicals
Part X. Industries Based on Biological Resources
Agriculture and Natural Resources Based Industries
Beverage Industry
Fishing
Food Industry
Forestry
Hunting
Livestock Rearing
Lumber
Paper and Pulp Industry
Part XI. Industries Based on Natural Resources
Part XII. Chemical Industries
Part XIII. Manufacturing Industries
Part XIV. Textile and Apparel Industries
Part XV. Transport Industries
Part XVI. Construction
Part XVII. Services and Trade
Part XVIII. Guides

Livestock Rearing References

Aldhous, P. 1996. Scrapie theory fed BSE complacency, now fears grow for unborn babies. New Scientist 150:4-5.

Ahlgren, GH. 1956. Forage Crops. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co.

American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH). 1994. Threshold Limit Values for Chemical Substances and Physical Agents and Biological Exposure Indices. Cincinnati, OH: ACGIH.

Auty, JH. 1983. Draught animal power in Australia. Asian Livestock VIII:83-84.

Banwart, WC and JM Brenner. 1975. Identification of sulfur gases evolved from animal manures. J Environ Qual 4:363-366.

Baxter, PJ. 1991. Toxic marine and freshwater algae: An occupational hazard? Br J Ind Med 48(8):505-506.

Bell, RG, DB Wilson, and EJ Dew. 1976. Feedlot manure top dressing for irrigated pasture: Good agricultural practice or a health hazard? B Environ Contam Tox 16:536-540.

Benenson, AS. 1990. Control of Communicable Diseases in Man. Washington, DC: American Public Health Association.

—. 1995. Control of Communicable Diseases Manual. Washington, DC: American Public Health Association.

Brown, LR. 1995. Meat production takes a leap. In Vital Signs 1995: The Trends that are Shaping our Future, edited by LR Brown, N Lenssen, and H Kane. New York: WW Norton & Company.

Bursey, RG. 1992. New uses of dairy products. In New Crops, New Uses, New Markets: Industrial and Commercial Products from U.S. Agriculture: 1992 Yearbook of Agriculture. Washington, DC: USDA.

Calandruccio, RA and JH Powers. 1949. Farm accidents: A clinical and statistical study covering twenty years. Am Surg (November):652-660.

Cameron, D and C Bishop. 1992. Farm accidents in adults. Br Med J 305:25-26.

Caras, RA. 1996. A Perfect Harmony: The Intertwining Lives of Animals and Humans throughout History. New York: Simon & Schuster.

Carstensen, O, J Lauritsen, and K Rasmussen. 1995. The West-Justland study on prevention of farm accidens, Phase 1: A study of work specific factors in 257 hospital-treated agricultural injuries. Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health 1:231-239.

Chatterjee, A, D Chattopadhyay, D Bhattacharya, Ak Dutta, and DN Sen Gupta. 1980. Some epidemiologic aspects of zoophilic dermatophytosis. International Journal of Zoonoses 7(1):19-33.

Cherry, JP, SH Fearirheller, TA Foglis, GJ Piazza, G Maerker, JH Woychik, and M Komanowski. 1992. Innovative uses of animal byproducts. In New Crops, New Uses, New Markets: Industrial and Commercial Products from U.S. Agriculture: 1992 Yearbook of Agriculture. Washington, DC: USDA.

Crowley, M. 1995. Aquaculture trends and technology. National Fisherman 76:18-19.

Deere & Co. 1994. Farm and Ranch Safety Management. Moline, IL: Deere & Co.

DeFoliart, GR. 1992. Insects as human foods. Crop Protection 11:395-399.

Donham, KJ. 1985. Zoonotic diseases of occupational significance in agriculture: A review. International Journal of Zoonoses 12:163-191.

—. 1986. Hazardous agents in agricultural dusts and methods of evaluation. Am J Ind Med 10:205-220.

Donham, KJ and LW Knapp. 1982. Acute toxic exposure to gases from liquid manure. J Occup Med 24:142-145

Donham, KJ and SJ Reynolds. 1995. Respiratory dysfunction in swine production workers: Dose-response relationship of environmental exposures and pulmonary function. Am J Ind Med 27:405-418.

Donham, KJ and L Scallon. 1985. Characterization of dusts collected from swine confinement buildings. Am Ind Hyg Assoc J 46:658-661.

Donham, KJ and KM Thu. 1995. Agriculture medicine and enivronmental health: The missing component of the sustainable agricultural movement. In Agricultural health and safety: Workplace, Environment, Sustainability, edited by HH McDuffie, JA Dosman, KM Semchuk, SA Olenchock, and A Senthilselvan. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Donham, KJ, MJ Rubino, TD Thedell and J Kammenmeyer. 1977. Potential health hazards of workers in swine confinement buildings. J Occup Med 19:383-387.

Donham, KJ, J Yeggy, and RR Dauge. 1985. Chemical and physical parameters of liquid manure from swine confinement facilities: Health implications for workers, swine and the environment. Agricultural Wastes 14:97-113.

—. 1988. Production rates of toxic gases from liquid manure: Health implications for workers and animals in swine buildings. Bio Wastes 24:161-173.

Donham, KJ, DC Zavala, and JA Merchant. 1984. Acute effects of work environment on pulmonary functions of swine confinement workers. Am J Ind Med 5:367-375.

Dosman, JA, BL Graham, D Hall, P Pahwa, H McDuffie, M Lucewicz, and T To. 1988. Respiratory symptoms and alterations in pulmonary function tests in swine producers in Saskatchewan: Results of a survey of farmers. J Occ Med 30:715-720.

Douglas, JDM. 1995. Salmon farming: Occupational health in a new rural industry. Occup Med 45:89-92.

Douglas, JDM and AH Milne. 1991. Decompression sickness in fish farm workers: A new occupational hazard. Br Med J 302:1244-1245.

Durning, AT and HB Brough. 1992. Reforming the livestock economy. In State of the World, edited by LR Brown. London: WW Norton & Company.

Erlich, SM, TR Driscoll, JE Harrison, MS Frommer, and J Leight. 1993. Work-related agricultural fatalities in Australia, 1982-1984. Scand J Work Environ Health 19:162-167.

Feddes, JJR and EM Barber. 1994. Agricultural engineering solutions to problems of air contaminants in farm silos and animal buildings. In Agricultural Health and Safety: Workplace, Environment, Sustainability, edited by HH McDuffie, JA Dosman, KM Semchuk, SA Olenchock and A Senthilselvan. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Ferguson, IR and LRC Path. 1993. Rats, fish and Weil’s disease. Safety and Health Practitioner :12-16.

Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. 1965. Farm Implements for Arid and Tropical Regions. Rome: FAO.

—. 1995. The State of the World Fisheries and Aquaculture. Rome: FAO.

Fretz, P. 1989. Injuries from farm animals. In Principles of Health and Safety in Agriculture, edited by JA Dosman and DW Crockcroft. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Froehlich, PA. 1995. Engineering Control Observations and Recommendations for Insect Rearing Facilities. Cincinnati, OH: NIOSH.

Gillespie, JR. 1997. Modern Livestock and Poultry Production. New York: Delmar Publishers.

Gorhe, DS. 1983. Draught animal power vs mechanization. Asian Livestock VIII:90-91.

Haglind, M and R Rylander. 1987. Occupational exposure and lung function measurements among workers in swine confinement buildings. J Occup Med 29:904-907.

Harries, MG and O Cromwell. 1982.Occupational allergy caused by allergy to pig’s urine. Br Med J 284:867.

Heederick, D, R Brouwer, K Biersteker, and J. Boleij. Relationship of airborne endotoxin and bacteria levels in pig farms with lung function and respiratory symptoms of farmers. Intl Arch Occup Health 62:595-601.

Hogan, DJ and P Lane. 1986. Dermatologic disorders in agriculture. Occup Med: State Art Rev 1:285-300.

Holness, DL, EL O’Glenis, A Sass-Kortsak, C Pilger, and J Nethercott. 1987. Respiratory effects and dust exposures in hog confinement farming. Am J Ind Med 11:571-580.

Holness, DL and JR Nethercott. 1994. Acute and chronic trauma in hog farmers. In Agricultural Health and Safety: Workplace, Environment, Sustainability, edited by HH McDuffie, JA Dosman, KM Semchuk, SA Olenchock, and A Senthilselvan. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Iowa Department of Public Health. 1995. Sentinel Project Research Agricultural Injury Notification System. Des Moines, IA: Iowa Department of Public Health.

Iverson, M, R Dahl, J. Korsgaard, T Hallas, and EJ Jensen. 1988. Respiratory symptoms in Danish farmers: An epidemiological study of risk factors. Thorax 48:872-877.

Johnson, SA. 1982. Silkworms. Minneapolis, MN: Lerner Publications.

Jones, W, K Morring, SA Olenchock, T Williams, and J. Hickey. 1984. Environmental study of poultry confinement buildings. Am Ind Hyg Assoc J 45:760-766.

Joshi, DD. 1983. Draught animal power for food production in Nepal. Asian Livestock VIII:86-87.

Ker, A. 1995. Farming Systems in the African Savanna. Ottawa,Canada: IDRC Books.

Khan, MH. 1983. Animal as power source in Asian agriculture. Asian Livestock VIII:78-79.

Kiefer, M. 1996. Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Division of Plant Industry, Gainesville, Florida. Cincinnati, OH: NIOSH.

Knoblauch, A, B Steiner, S Bachmann, G Trachsler, R Burgheer, and J Osterwalder. 1996. Accidents related to manure in eastern Switzerland: An epidemiological study. Occup Environ Med 53:577-582.

Kok, R, K Lomaliza, and US Shivhare. 1988. The design and performance of an insect farm/chemical reactor for human food production. Canadian Agricultural Engineering 30:307-317.

Kuo, C and MCM Beveridge. 1990. Mariculture: Biological and management problems, and possible engineering solutions. In Engineering for Offshore Fish Farming. London: Thomas Telford.

Layde, PM, DL Nordstrom, D Stueland, LB Wittman, MA Follen, and KA Olsen. 1996. Animal-related occupational injuries in farm residents. Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health 2:27-37.

Leistikow, B Donham, JA Merchant, and S Leonard. 1989. Assessment of U.S. poultry worker respiratory risk. Am J Ind Med 17:73-74.

Lenhart, SW. 1984. Sources of respiratory insult in the poultry processing industry. Am J Ind Med 6:89-96.

Lincoln, JM and ML Klatt. 1994. Preventing Drownings of Commercial Fishermen. Anchorage, AK: NIOSH.

MacDiarmid, SC. 1993. Risk analysis and the importation of animals and animal products. Rev Sci Tech 12:1093-1107.

Marx, J, J Twiggs, B Ault, J Merchant, and E Fernandez-Caldas. 1993. Inhaled aeroallergen and storage mite reactivity in a Wisconsin farmer nested case-control study. Am Rev Respir Dis 147:354-358.

Mathias, CGT. 1989. Epidemiology of occupational skin disease in agriculture. In Principles of Health and Safety in Aagriculture, edited by JA Dosman and DW Cockroft. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Meadows, R. 1995. Livestock legacy. Environ Health Persp 103:1096-1100.

Meyers, JR. 1997. Injuries among Farm Workers in the United States, 1993. DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 97-115. Cincinnati, OH: NIOSH.

Mullan, RJ and LI Murthy. 1991. Occupational sentinel health events: An up-dated list for physician recognition and public health surveillance. Am J Ind Med 19:775-799.

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). 1993. Injuries among Farm Workers in the United states. Cincinnati, OH: NIOSH.

—. 1994. Request for Assistance in Preventing Organic Dust Toxic Syndrome. Washington, DC: GPO.

National Institutes of Health (NIH). 1988. Institutional Administrator’s Manual for Laboratory Animal Care and Use. Washington, DC: GPO.

National Research Council (NRC). 1989. Alternative Agriculture: Committee on the Role of Alternative Farming Methods in Modern Production Agriculture. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.

National Safety Council. 1982. Accident Facts. Chicago, IL: National Safety Council.

—. 1985. Electrofishing. NSC data sheet I-696-85. Chicago, IL: National Safety Council.

Nesheim, MC, RE Austic, and LE Card. 1979. Poultry Production. Philadelphia, PA: Lea and Febiger.

Olenchock, S, J May, D Pratt, L Piacitelli, and J Parker. 1990. Presence of endotoxins in different agricultural environments. Am J Ind Med 18:279-284.

O’Toole, C. 1995. Alien Empire. New York: Harper Collins Publishers.

Orlic, M and RA Leng. 1992. Prelimenary Proposal to Assist Bangladesh to Improve Ruminant Livestock Productivity and Reduce Methane Emissions. Washington, DC: US Environmental Protection Agency, Global Change Division.

Panti, NK and SP Clark. 1991. Transient hazardous conditions in animal building due to manure gas release during slurry mixing. Applied Engineering in Agriculture 7:478-484.

Platt, AE. 1995. Aquaculture boosts fish catch. In Vital Signs 1995: The Trends that Are Shaping our Future, edited by LR Brown, N Lenssen, and H Kane. New York: WW Norton & Company.

Pursel, VG, CE Rexroad, and RJ Wall. 1992. Barnyard biotchnology may soon produce new medical therapeutics. In New Crops, New Uses, New Markets: Industrial and Commercial Products from U.S. Agriculture: 1992 Yearbook of Agriculture Washington, DC: USDA.

Ramaswami, NS and GL Narasimhan. 1982. A case for building up draught animal power. Kurushetra (India’s Journal for Rural Development) 30:4.

Reynolds, SJ, KJ Donham, P Whitten, JA Merchant, LF Burmeister, and WJ Popendorf. 1996. A longitudinal evaluation of dose-response relationships for environmental exposures and pulmonary function in swine production workers. Am J Ind Med 29:33-40.

Robertson, MH, IR Clarke, JD Coghlan, and ON Gill. 1981. Leptospirosis in trout farmers. Lancet: 2(8247)626-627.

Robertson, TD, SA Ribeiro, S Zodrow, and JV Breman. 1994. Assessment of Strategic Livestock Feed Supplementation as an Opportunity for Generating Income for Small Scale Dairy Producers and Reducing Methane Emissions in Bangladesh. Washington, DC: US Environmental Protection Agency.

Rylander, R. 1994. Symptoms and mechanisms: Inflammation of the lung. Am J Ind Med 25:19-24.

Rylander, R, KJ Donham, C Hjort, R Brouwer, and D Heederik. 1989. Effects of exposure to dust in swine confinement buildings: A working group report. Scand J Work Environ Health 15:309-312.

Rylander, R and N Essle. 1990. Bronchial hyperactivity among pig and dairy farmers. Am J Ind Med 17:66-69.

Rylander, R, Y Peterson, and KJ Donman. 1990. Questionnaire evaluating organic dust exposure. Am J Ind Med 17:121-128.

Rylander, R and R Jacobs. 1994. Organic Dusts: Exposure, Effects and Prevention. Chicago, IL: Lewis Publishing.
Safina, C. 1995. The world’s imperiled fish. Sci Am 272:46-53.

Scherf, BD. 1995. World Watch List for Domestic Animal Diversity. Rome: FAO.

Schmidt, MJ. 1997. Working elephants. Sci Am 279:82-87.

Schmidt, JO. 1992. Allergy to venomous insects. In The Hive and the Honey Bee, edited by JM Graham. Hamilton: DaDant & Sons.

Shumacher, MJ and NB Egen. 1995. Significance of Africanized bees on public health. Arch Int Med 155:2038-2043.

Sherson, D, I Hansen, and T Sigsgaard. 1989. Occupationally related respiratory symptoms in trout-processing workers. Allergy 44:336-341.

Stem, C, DD Joshi, and M Orlic. 1995. Reducing Methane Emissions from Ruminant Livestock: Nepal prefeasibility Study. Washington, DC: US Environmental Protection Agency, Global Change Division.

Sweeten, JM. 1995. Odor measurement technology and applications: A state-of-the-art review. In Seventh International Symposium on Agricultural and Food Processing Wastes: Proceedings of the 7th International Symposium, edited by CC Ross. American Society of Agricultural Engineering.

Tannahill, R. 1973. Food in History. New York: Stein and Day.

Thorne, PS, KJ Donham, J Dosman, P Jagielo, JA Merchant, and S Von Essen. 1996. Occupational health. In Understanding the Impacts of Large-scale Swine Production, edited by KM Thu, D Mcmillan, and J Venzke. Iowa City, IA: University of Iowa.

Turner, F and PJ Nichols. 1995. Role of the epithelium in the response of the airways. Abstract for the 19th Cotton and Other Organic Dust Research Conference, 6-7 January, San antonio, TX.

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). 1996. Urban Agriculture: Food, Jobs, and Sustainable Cities. New York: UNDP.

US Department of Agriculture (USDA). 1992. Agricultural Waste Management Field Handbook. Washington, DC: USDA Soil Conservation Service.

—. 1996a. Livestock and Poultry: World Markets and Trade. Circular Series FL&P 1-96. Washington DC: USDA Foreign Agricultural Service.

—. 1996b. Dairy: World Markets and Trade. Circular Series FD 1-96. Washington DC: USDA Foreign Agricultural Service.

—. 1997. Poultry Production and Value, 1996 Summary. Washington, DC: National Agricultural Statistics Service.

van Hage-Hamsten, M, S Johansson, and S Hogland. 1985. Storage mite allergy is common in a farming population. Clin Allergy 15:555-564.

Vivian, J. 1986. Keeping Bees. Charlotte, VT: Williamson Publishing.

Waller, JA. 1992. Injuries to farmers and farm families in a dairy state. J Occup Med 34:414-421.

Yang, N. 1995. Research and development of buffalo draught power for farming in China. Asian Livestock XX:20-24.

Zhou, C and JM Roseman. 1995. Agriculture-related residual injuries: Prevalence, type, and associated factors among Alabama farm operators, 1990. Journal of Rural Health 11:251-258.

Zuehlke, RL, CF Mutel, and KJ Donham. 1980. Diseases of Agricultural Workers. Iowa City, IA: Department of Preventive Medicine and Environmental Health, University of Iowa.