Category Archives: Viral disease

COYOTES preying on FLORIDA PETS and SEA TURTLE nests ~ MOUNTAIN LION kills pet DOG in CALIFORNIA neighborhood ~ MOUNTAIN LION with cubs sighted near the University of CALIFORNIA-Berkeley ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS report from VIRGINIA ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from AL, AZ, CT, IL, IN, NY, & TX ~ CDC REPORTS: ZOONOTIC DISEASE summary for week ending July 7, 2012.

Coyote. Courtesy U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

Florida 07/23/12 by Terry O’Connor – Emboldened coyotes have seized at least one pet in the Rotonda area and routinely stalk turtle nests on Gasparilla Island sands. “Coyote predation has increased on unmarked sea turtle nests after Tropical Storm Debby,’ said Wilma Katz of the Coastal Wildlife Club. Coyotes can be heard howling at night throughout the Gasparilla Island area and sometimes during the day when emergency vehicles pass by. The scientific name of the coyote, Canis latrans, means “barking dog.” Coyotes help control rodent populations and are not all bad, says at least one naturalist. “I know that coyotes can be a potential problem but it is impressive that a mid-sized predator can persist and even thrive in the face of so many attempts to kill it,” said William Dunson, Gasparilla Gazette Nature Walk columnist. “Although it is presumably not native originally to this area, it seems to replace some of the native predators that have been eliminated, and I do enjoy having them around. We seem to have a very healthy ecosystem here with good to excellent populations of birds, amphibians, reptiles and mammals, so the coyotes do not seem to be an adverse disturbance to natural systems.”

Photo by Ianare Sevi. Wikimedia Commons.

Unless it’s your pet a coyote targets for lunch, authorities say. Rotonda West resident Desiree Numen told animal control officials a coyote carried off her family’s Jack Russell terrier, Chester, March 27. The coyote bit into her dog’s neck as they were standing in her front yard and ran into the woods despite her screams. Most coyote attacks on pets occur either at night or at dusk or dawn. Animal control officer John Butler said a coyote is less likely to attack if a dog is leashed and they are attracted to open garbage cans. Coyotes have become common in the Gasparilla island area yet are rarely seen despite leaving tracks and spoor as evidence of their existence. Attacks on pets are still rare as coyotes have an innate fear of humans, according to University of Florida data.

California 07/23/12  by Veronica Rocha – A mountain lion mauled a 1-year-old German-Belgian shepherd mix named Cookie to death Saturday, making it the first reported killing of its kind this year in Glendale, officials said. The attack prompted Glendale police officials to renew warnings to hillside residents to keep their pets indoors at night. “She was a great dog,” said Cookie’s owner, Karine Tatevossian. “It’s just really scary.” The shepherd mix was staying at her parents’ home in the 1800 block of Emerald Terrace for the weekend, she said. – For complete article see,0,3762330.story

Mountain Lion Sightings:

California 07/24/12 Berkeley, Alameda County: by Frances Dinkelspiel – UC police are warning hikers to be on the outlook for a mountain lion and her cubs that may be living near the Greek Theater. In the past few weeks, hikers have reported several sightings of a mountain lion, including one on Thursday. “In the past few weeks there have been several sightings of a mountain lion and her cubs near the Switching Station #6 construction site on the western side of Stern Hall,” UC Police said in a safety alert sent out Tuesday. “The latest sighting was of a female mountain lion which occurred on Thursday, July 19th.” Stern Hall is located on Gayley Road right near the Greek Theater. – See

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Virginia 07/24/12 Virginia Beach: In the past four weeks, there have been five EEE-positive mosquito pools in four different locations, according to a news release from the Virginia Beach Department of Public Works. Three of the locations were in Blackwater and the fourth was on West Neck Road in Pungo. – See

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Alabama 07/24/12 Mobile, Mobile County: A sentinel chicken in the 36582 ZIP Code has tested positive for WNV, officials with the Mobile County Health Department confirmed today. – See

Arizona 07/24/12 Maricopa County: An elderly man with underlying health issues has succumbed to WNV. Last month the first human case of WNV in the county was diagnosed in a 30-year-old woman who has since recovered. – See

Connecticut 07/25/12 News Release – The State Mosquito Management Program today announced mosquitoes testing positive for WNV have been identified in 13 towns so far this season. The mosquitoes were trapped by the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station (CAES) from June 27 to July 18 in: Bethel, Danbury, Greenwich, East Haven, New Haven, Newington, Newtown, Norwalk, Stamford, Stratford, West Haven, Wallingford and Wilton. – See

Illinois 07/24/12 Cook County: Health officials have confirmed that a female in her 60s has become the first human case of WNV in the county. – See

Indiana 07/24/12 Martinsville, Morgan County: Health officials reported Monday that a mosquito pool on the south side of the city has tested positive for WNV. – See

New York 07/24/12 New Haven, Oswego County: WNV has been found in a mosquito trap in New Haven, town Supervisor Russell So far this season, the virus also has been found in a mosquito pool collected near the Cicero Swamp, in two traps in Central Square and in a mosquito pool on Midler Avenue in Syracuse. – See

Texas 07/24/12 Tarrant County: Sandra Parker, medical director of Tarrant County Public Health, told Fort Worth City Council members Tuesday that the county has 30 reported human cases of WNV, including five in Fort Worth. – See

CDC Reports:

CDC MMWR Summary for Week ending July 7, 2012:

Published July 13, 2012/ 61(27); ND-367-ND-381

Anaplasmosis . . . 17 . . . New York (17),

Babesiosis . . . 8 . . . California, New York (7),

Brucellosis . . . 2 . . . Florida, Indiana,  

Ehrlichiosis . . . 17 . . . Alabama, Florida (2), Maryland (2), New York (3), Tennessee (4), Virginia (5),

Giardiasis . . . 89 . . . Alabama, California (16), Florida (19), Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Missouri (2), Montana, Nebraska, Nevada (2), New York (16), Oregon (7), Pennsylvania (9), South Carolina (2), Vermont (2), Virginia (2), Washington (5), Wisconsin,

HME/HGE Undetermined . . . 1 . . . Indiana,

Lyme Disease . . .  161. . .  Delaware (6), Florida (3), Maryland (5), New York (63), Pennsylvania (46), Rhode Island (8), Tennessee (3), Vermont (5), Virginia (22),

Q Fever (Acute) . . . 1 . . . Indiana,

Q Fever (Chronic) . . . 1 . . . Texas, 

Rabies (Animal) . . . 47. . . Alabama, Maine, Michigan, New York (15), Texas (11), Virginia (15), West Virginia (3),

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Confirmed) . . . 2. . . Pennsylvania (2),

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Probable) . . . 31 . . . Alabama (3), Arizona (2), Arkansas (3), Indiana, Tennessee (5), Virginia (17),

Tularemia . . . 2 . . . Colorado, Nebraska.

ALASKAN hiker mauled by GRIZZLY sow with cubs ~ CALIFORNIA Western Gray SQUIRREL tests positive for WEST NILE VIRUS ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from NE, & TX ~ RABIES reports from CO, FL (2), ME, MD, MA, NJ, PA, & VT (2).

Grizzly. Courtesy U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

Alaska 07/23/12 by Lisa Demer – On a private trail above Eagle River Road, high up in the brush where bears are common, a man hiking with his beagle was mauled by a grizzly Sunday afternoon, authorities said. The man suffered cuts to his head, back and leg, said police Sgt. Cameron Hokenson. Medics rushed him to the hospital but authorities said the injuries aren’t life threatening. Police Lt. Dave Parker identified the hiker as Bob Eder, 50, who lives near where the attack occurred. The sow was with three older cubs, said Jessy Coltrane, area biologist for the state Department of Fish and Game,  who toted a shotgun as she checked out the scene with police. The attack appears to have happened when the hiker startled the brown bears in the tall brush, she said. They ran off. “The vegetation on each side is at least 6 feet tall, impenetrable – you can’t see through it,” Coltrane said. She was able to talk with the hiker briefly before he was taken to the hospital. “The one thing I asked him was how close was the bear when you saw it. He said ‘oh, 5 feet.’ She was right there in the bushes essentially, with these cubs,” the biologist said. “It was incredibly unfortunate but a classic defensive attack by a sow with cubs, surprised at very close range.” – For complete article see

Western gray squirrel. Photo by state of California.

California 07/24/12 by Laura Dudnick – A squirrel found in Menlo Park has tested positive for West Nile virus, becoming the first squirrel in San Mateo County to test positive for the virus this year, the San Mateo County Mosquito and Vector Control announced Monday. The Western gray squirrel, collected July 3, had a low level of West Nile virus, referred to as a “chronic”  infection, according to county officials. The low level indicates the squirrel was not likely infected recently, and possibly acquired the virus last year. Tree squirrels don’t travel long distances, meaning the infection was likely acquired in or near Menlo Park, county officials said. Along with birds including ravens, crows and jays, tree squirrels are highly susceptible to West Nile virus, which is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. – For complete article see

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Nebraska 07/19/12 Hamilton County: A man in his 70s tested positive for WNV according to the Department of Health and Human Services. He was hospitalized and released.  It’s the first positive human case seen so far this season. – See

Texas 07/22/12 McLennan County: An 80-year-old resident is dead after being infected with WNV and at least five other human cases of the virus have been confirmed, according the McLennan County Public Health District. Another three human cases of WNV are suspected, one of which is a person from Limestone County. – See


Colorado 07/19/12 Fort Collins, Larimer County: A raccoon that was killed by dogs after entering an enclosed yard near East Trilby Road and South Lemay Avenue has tested positive for rabies. It is the first rabid raccoon found on Colorado’s Front Range since 1963. – See

Florida 07/23/12 Callaway, Bay County: A raccoon found south of the intersection of Old Bicycle Road and Betty Louise Drive has tested positive for rabies. – See

Florida 07/20/12 Jacksonville, Duval County: A rabies alert has been issued for an area bordered on the north by Clapboard Swamp, on the south by Clapboard Creek, on the west by Cedar Point Road at Clapboard Creek and east by Cedar Point Road and Boney Road. – See

Maine 07/19/12 Clinton, Kennebec County: In the last three months, the animal control officer has handled five confirmed cases of rabies — three on the River Road, one on the Bush Road and one on the Canaan Road — involving a skunk, a fox and raccoons, the town said Thursday in a press release. – See

Maryland 07/20/12 Brunswick, Frederick County: Two raccoons have tested positive for rabies within the last two week. The first was a young, injured raccoon that was found on July 4 along Petersville Road between Greenwood and B Street. The second raccoon was involved in an altercation with dogs on July 18 on F Street. – See

Massachusetts 07/20/12 Spencer, Worcester County: Health officials are warning anyone who may have touched a bat found at Luther Hill Park on Tuesday to consult with their doctor immediately, as the bat had rabies. A 10-year-old child who was bitten by the bat is undergoing treatment, but Health Agent Lee Jarvis said there were reports that several other children may have touched it and could have been exposed to the deadly virus. – See

New Jersey 07/20/12 Andover, Sussex County: A fox that attacked a seven-year-old boy in the driveway of his Wilson Place home has tested positive for rabies. – See

Pennsylvania 07/20/12 West Mead Township, Crawford County: Authorities say another raccoon found in the county has tested positive for rabies. It’s the sixth one this year. – See

Vermont 07/21/12 Coventry, Orleans County: A feral cat that attacked four people and a dog at the Coventry Landfill has tested positive for rabies. One victim suffered seven puncture wounds. – See

Vermont 07/23/12 Shelburne, Chittenden County: A dead bat discovered in the David Park subdivision area has tested positive for rabies. – See|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE&nclick_check=1

IOWA confirms first case of CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE in a DEER ~ KANSAS officials confirm seven DEER found with CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE ~ CALIFORNIA mobile home park residents being terrorized by COYOTES ~ TENNESSEE BOY dies of MOSQUITO-borne LaCROSSE ENCEPHALITIS ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CA (3), CO, GA, IL, MA, PA, RI, SD, & TX (2) ~ CDC REPORTS: ZOONOTIC DISEASE summary for week ending June 30, 2012.

Whitetailed Fawn. PD. Wikimedia Commons.

Iowa 07/20/12 A white-tail deer at a hunting preserve in Davis County has become the first positive detection of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Iowa.  The positive sample was verified this week, and DNR is working closely with the State Veterinarian on this isolated incident. The Davis County facility where the animal was held has been inspected by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS) to ensure that any remaining deer remain contained.  The facility is surrounded by an eight-foot fence.  A quarantine has also been issued for the facility. – For complete article see

Kansas 07/19/12 News Release – The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) has announced that nine deer from Kansas tested positive for chronic wasting disease, seven confirmed and two presumptive, for the current test year. All but three of the nine deer — one from Stafford County one from Sumner County, and one from Ford County — were animals from northwestern Kansas. The Stafford, Sumner, and Ford county cases were firsts for each county. Eight of the deer were taken by hunters during the 2011 hunting seasons, and one was euthanized by a KDWPT natural resource officer after it was reported as acting sick. Two cases were from Norton County and one each from Decatur, Ford, Rawlins, Stafford, Sumner, Trego, and Wallace counties. All cases were white-tailed deer. – For complete release see

California 07/19/12 Carson, Los Angeles County: Residents of the Carson Harbor Village mobile home park say almost two dozen of their pets have been attacked, injured, or killed by coyotes in less than a year. The coyotes are living in nearby marsh areas, but the park’s owner has refused to allow trappers on the property due to liability issues and protests from animal activists. The City Council is considering legal options that would force the park owner to allow animal control professionals on the property. – See

Tennessee 07/20/12 Six-year-old Skyler Cooper of Union County died at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital over the weekend of LaCrosse Encephalitis (LAC). According to the CDC, less than 1% of all LAC cases end fatally. The disease is spread through treehole mosquitoes and, according to the American Mosquito Control Association, 13 states east of the Mississippi River have reported LAC cases. – See

West Nile Virus (WNV):

California 07/19/12 Los Angeles County: Health officials confirm a San Gabriel Valley resident is the first confirmed human case of WNV in the county this year. – See

California 07/20/12 Ventura County: Three more birds have tested positive for WNV: two in Simi Valley and one in Camarillo, county officials said today. – See

California 07/21/12 Stockton, San Joaquin County: A health official confirmed Friday that a 48-year-old resident is the first human case of WNV in the county this year. The man reported no symptoms, but tested positive when donating blood. – See

Colorado 07/19/12 Fremont and Weld counties: Two equine cases of WNV have been diagnosed representing the first reported cases of WNV this year. Both horses are being treated. – See

Georgia 07/20/12 DeKalb County: Health officials said 17 of 51 collections of mosquitoes recently tested positive for WNV. All positive returns occurred inside I-285. – See

Illinois 07/19/12 DuPage and Will counties: City officials confirm WNV has been found in Arrowhead Park on Naperville’s north side, making it the fourth spot in the area where the mosquito-borne virus has been found in recent weeks. One trap at Arrowhead Park recorded a positive test both this week and last week. There also have been two consecutive positive tests this month at Seager Park on Plank Road and the area of Naper Boulevard and Bailey Road. Pioneer Park on South Washington Street tested positive once as well. – See,0,517207.story

Massachusetts 07/19/12 Newton, Middlesex County: Health officials confirm mosquito pools collected in Oak Hill and New Centre have tested positive for WNV. – See

Pennsylvania 07/21/12 Barrett Township, Monroe County: Municipal officials say several mosquitoes and five dead birds have tested positive for WNV. – See

Rhode Island 07/19/12 Westerly, Washington County: Mosquitoes collected in Chapman Swamp have tested positive for WNV. – See

South Dakota 07/20/12 sdgov: Update – One case of human WNV reported in a Lake County resident. A second WNV positive blood donor has been reported.  There have now been 2 WNV positive blood donors in Beadle and Brown counties. There have also been 19 WNV positive mosquito detections in Brown (11), Brookings (5), Codington (1), Hughes (1) and Lincoln (1) counties. – See

Texas 07/19/12 Brazos County: by Julie Blanco – Texas A&M University, College Station and Bryan have tested positive for mosquitoes that carry (WNV). Other sites that have tested positive for the virus include the area around the Jack K. Williams Administration Building, Brison Park and Sue Haswell Park. While there have been 23 human cases of the virus in Texas this year, there have yet to be any in Brazos County. Texas has highest number of reported human cases of West Nile, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The nation’s first West Nile related death this year occurred in Dallas earlier this month. – See

Texas 07/19/12 Plano, Collin County: Two probable human cases of WNV have been reported occurring in the 75074 and 75075 zip code areas. WNV was first detected in mosquitoes in Plano in mid-June. – See

CDC Reports:

CDC MMWR Summary for Week ending June 30, 2012:

Published July 6, 2012/ 61(26); ND-353-ND-366

Anaplasmosis . . . 18 . . . Alabama, Florida, Maine (3), New York (12), Vermont,

Babesiosis . . . 2 . . . New York (2),

Brucellosis . . . 1 . . . Indiana,  

Ehrlichiosis . . . 12 . . . Arkansas (3), Maryland, Oklahoma, Tennessee (4), Virginia (3),

Giardiasis . . . 94 . . . Alaska (2), California (11), Florida (21), Iowa (2), Maine, Maryland (2), Missouri (7), Montana (2), Nebraska, New York (24), Ohio (7), Oregon (2), Pennsylvania (6), Washington (8),

HME/HGE Undetermined . . . 3 . . . Indiana, New York (2),

Lyme Disease . . .  212. . .  Alabama, Alaska, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland (25), Nebraska, New Jersey (2), New York (90), Oregon, Pennsylvania (70), Vermont (4), Virginia (13), Wisconsin (2),

Rabies (Animal) . . . 32. . . Illinois, Kentucky, Missouri, New York (10), Texas (6), Virginia (13),

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Confirmed) . . . 1. . . New York,

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Probable) . . . 21 . . . Alabama (3), Florida (2), New York, Oklahoma (3), Tennessee (8), Virginia (3), Wyoming.

RABID BEAVER attacks two young GIRLS swimming in VIRGINIA lake ~ Wildlife Conservancy trail camera snaps rare photo of MOUNTAIN LION roaming MICHIGAN’s UP ~ FOLLOW-UP REPORT: OREGONIAN may lose fingers and toes after contracting BUBONIC PLAGUE ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS reports from MA, & NC ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CAx2 ~ RABIES reports from FL, GA, ID, KS, ME, NE, NYx2, NCx2, & PA.

American Beaver. Photo by Steve of Washington, D.C. Wikimedia Commons.

Virginia 07/17/12 Authorities say two young girls are recovering after being bitten by a rabid beaver while swimming in Lake Anna. Louisa County Sheriff’s Maj. Donald Lowe said Tuesday that the 11-year-old and eight-year-old sisters were attacked on Sunday near Sorbie Cove in Louisa. The Spotsylvania County girls have since been released from the hospital.

The Free Lance-Star reports ( ) that Lowe said somebody already had shot and killed the beaver by the time the authorities responded to the incident. Police then turned the beaver over to the health department, which confirmed the animal had rabies. Both girls are receiving shots for rabies. Virginia Department of Health officials say it’s just the fourth time in the past decade that a beaver in Virginia has been confirmed to have rabies.

Michigan 07/18/12 by Tom Greenwood – A rare daytime photograph of a cougar roaming the woods in the Upper Peninsula is bolstering arguments of wild life experts that the big cats are doing well in Michigan. The Michigan Wildlife Conservancy —a nonprofit organization formed in 1982 — released a photo Wednesday of the cougar that was snapped by a trail camera on June 1 on private property in southern Marquette County.

Photo by Michigan Wildlife Conservancy.

According to Patrick Rusz, director of wildlife programs for the conservancy, the cougar looks healthy and checks in at about 72 inches from nose to tail and weighs between 100 and 120 pounds. “There have been other confirmations of the existence of cougars in the form of sightings, tracks and scat, but more and more of them are appearing on trail cameras,” Rusz said. “For years, the Department of Natural Resources has been denying or downplaying the existence of cougars, saying they were someone’s escaped pet or cats that drifted in from the west. “It’s time for them to take a look at this.” Rusz, along with retired DNR forester Michael Zuidema, verified the trail camera’s location on a well-used wildlife trail atop a wooded ridge. According to Rusz, the camera also has photographed wolves, coyotes, bobcats and other predators at the same site over a four-year period. – For complete article see

Follow-Up Report:

(See OREGONIAN hospitalized with illness believed to be PLAGUE Posted 06/13/12)

Photo provided by Gaylord family taken July 11, 2012.

Oregon 07/17/12 by Steven Dubois – One look at Paul Gaylord’s hands shows why the plague is referred to as “Black Death.” The welder’s once-strong hands have been withered by the cell-killing infection and darkened to the color of charcoal. Doctors are waiting to see if they can save a portion of his fingers, but the outlook is grim for the man who needs them for his livelihood. “I don’t think I can do my job,” Gaylord said in a phone interview from a Bend, Ore., hospital. “I’m going to lose all my fingers on both hands. I don’t know about my thumbs. The toes – I might lose all them, too.” Gaylord, who turns 60 next month, contracted a rare case of the plague trying to take a mouse from the jaws of a choking cat at his home in Prineville, in rural Oregon. – For complete article see

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Massachusetts 07/18/12 Massachusetts will launch an urgent campaign of aerial spraying after numerous mosquito samples collected in the southeast of the state tested positive for the killer EEE virus, health officials said on Tuesday. A bite from an infected mosquito can transmit the EEE virus, triggering a potentially deadly inflammation of the brain that can also leave survivors with significant brain damage. – See

North Carolina 07/18/12 Two North Carolina Quarter Horses were euthanized this month after contracting EEE, a mosquito-borne disease that is largely preventable in equine by vaccination. The unvaccinated horses–a 2-year-old Robeson County mare and a 7-year-old stallion from Bladen County–exhibited signs of generalized weakness, stumbling, depression, and inability to stand or eat. The Robeson County horse’s condition deteriorated so quickly that she was euthanized within 24 hours of first exhibiting clinical signs. The Bladen County stallion displayed signs for several weeks before being euthanized earlier this month; testing at Rollins Laboratory, in Raleigh, confirmed EEE this week. They are the first reported cases of EEE in North Carolina horses this year. Last week, New Hanover County officials reported that EEE was found in a sentinel chicken flock. – See

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Stanislaus County

California 07/18/12 Stanislaus County: A 6-year-old girl has WNV, the third confirmed human case in the state this year. – See

Contra Costa County

California 07/18/12 Contra Costa County: Two crows tested positive for WNV Tuesday, according to the Contra Costa Mosquito and Vector Control District. The crows were found in the towns of Pleasant Hill and Knightsen. – See


Florida 07/18/12 Graceville, Jackson County: A raccoon that fought with and was killed by two dogs on Damascus Church Road has tested positive for rabies. – See

Georgia 07/17/12 Waverly, Camden County: A resident is being treated for exposure to rabies after being exposed to a fox that tested positive for the virus. – See

Idaho 07/18/12 Caldwell, Canyon County: A bat that bit a young girl playing near the Indian Creek Bridge on Tuesday has tested positive for rabies. – See

Kansas 07/18/12 Augusta, Butler County: A skunk that fought with a dog has tested positive for rabies. – See

Maine 07/18/12 Bath, Sagadahoc County: A fox that attacked a 67-year-old man on Whiskeag Road Monday has tested positive for rabies. This is the second confirmed case of rabies in the city this year. – See

Nebraska 07/18/12 Cheyenne County: by John Roark – Two recent reports of rabid skunks in eastern Cheyenne County is creating cause for concern. The first incident occurred July 2 in the Lodgepole-Sunol area, when a skunk managed to get inside the back yard of a residence and tried to attack a small dog. That skunk was taken to White Bluffs Veterinary Hospital in Sidney, before being sent by Dr. Dave Weiderspon to laboratories at Kansas State University in Manhattan, where the animal tested positive for rabies. A week later, another skunk was discovered in the back yard of a residence along Road 109, near Sidney Airport. In that instance, a dog was playing with the dead skunk, which also tested positive for rabies at KSU. – See

New York 07/18/12 Otsego County: Four people are being treated for potential exposure to rabies after a cat tested positive for the virus. – See

New York 07/19/12 Mahopac, Putnam County: One person is being treated for exposure to rabies after being bitten by a stray cat that tested positive for the virus. – See

North Carolina 07/17/12 Boone, Watauga County: The Appalachian District Health Department is urging anyone to come forward who might have had contact with a striped black-and-brown cat last week in Boone — a cat later determined to have rabies. The department received a report of three females in a Ford F-150 truck, either green and tan or brown and tan, who left a thin, striped, black-and-brown cat at the Kangaroo gas station on State Farm Road around 4:30 p.m. July 12. The cat was later taken to the Watauga Humane Society and tested positive for rabies. It is critical that the three individuals and anyone else who may have come in contact with this animal between June 29 and July 15 contact the Watauga County Health Department immediately at (828) 264-4995 immediately for a rabies risk assessment.

North Carolina 07/18/12 Hillsborough, Orange County: A raccoon that was attacked by dogs near Highway 57 has tested positive for rabies. This is the eighth case of rabies confirmed in the county this year. – See

Pennsylvania 07/18/12 Oakmont, Allegheny County: Health officials have issued a rabies warning after a raccoon found staggering along a walking trail near Allegheny River Boulevard and Allegheny Avenue on Sunday tested positive for rabies. – See

MARYLAND WOMAN attacked in her yard by DEER with RABIES ~ CALIFORNIA reopens wilderness park after MOUNTAIN LION is captured ~ NEW MEXICO officers shoot MOUNTAIN LION that tried to attack a WOMAN ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS report from FL ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CT, DE, IL, MA, NJ, OK, & TX ~ RABIES reports from ME, & NY.

White tailed buck. Courtesy U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Maryland 07/16/12 by Michael A. Sawyers – The last thing Theresa Stevens expected to happen July 6 was to be kicked in the face by a deer, especially a deer that had rabies. The Georges Creek Boulevard woman is part way through a series of post-exposure rabies shots that will continue weekly into early August. Stevens, whose home is directly behind Jolly Roger Discount Liquors, said she had let her Yorkie out of the house at 6 a.m. when she looked up and found herself nose to nose with a deer. “It stood up on its back legs and hit me in the cheek with one hoof and on the shoulder with the other,” Stevens said. Stevens pushed the deer away, grabbed her dog, and awakened her husband, Larry, telling him she had been attacked by a deer. “He thought I was crazy,” she said. When the Stevenses went back outside, the doe was lying beneath their Toyota Corolla. “I got it a bucket of water and it stuck its head in it,” Stevens said. “Larry got some video of the deer under the car.”

Courtesy National Park Service.

Eventually, Jim Mullan of the Maryland Wildlife and Heritage Service was called to the scene. “The deer was emaciated and appeared to have been injured, probably by a vehicle strike,” Mullan said. “It could have been that weakened condition that allowed the deer to become contacted by a rabid animal.” The deer was euthanized and samples were taken to test for chronic wasting disease and rabies. Rabies was confirmed July 9 via a laboratory test at the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene in Baltimore, Mullan said. The CWD results are awaited. CWD is a deer disease and is not known to affect humans. A determination was made that Stevens, whose hands had small cuts upon them, was exposed to the rabies virus by touching the water in which the deer had placed its head and deposited saliva. Stevens said she developed a bad headache and muscle pain seven days after the incident and began vaccinations that evening. “I won’t be hospitable to any more wildlife,” Stevens said. It is rare for a deer to contract rabies, according to George Timko, a biologist with the Maryland Wildlife & Heritage Service. “The last case we confirmed in the state was in Frederick County three or four years ago,” Timko said Monday. The most likely source of the rabies would be a raccoon, he added. The biologist said feeding deer, such as with corn, will attract raccoons as well, thus putting those two animals in proximity and increasing the chance that a rabid raccoon could infect a deer.

California 07/17/12 Game wardens have captured a mountain lionin a Southern California wilderness park closed to visitors during the weekend because of a cougar prowling the area. State Fish and Game spokesman Andrew Hughan says the 100-pound male mountain lion was trapped early Tuesday in the Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park in the Santa Ana Mountains foothills of eastern Orange County.  A portion of the park is in Cleveland National Forest. The park was closed after a mountain lion was spotted in the park on Sunday. Hughan tells City News Service that the animal trapped

Courtesy National Park Service.

Tuesday is believed to be the same one. The park is now open. In 2004, mountain biker Mark Reynolds was killed by a cougar lion in Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park.

New Mexico 07/17/12 by Duane Barbati – Otero County Sheriff’s Office deputies had to kill a mountain lion in the yard of a Chaparral residence last Wednesday, an OCSO spokesman said. OCSO Sgt. Mark Tarantino said a female mountain lion was shot at a residence in the 200 block of Jung Sun Lane. “It was atypical ” Tarantino said. “It was going back and forth along the back fence of the property and under a trailer. It was transported by New Mexico Game and Fish to be tested. It was pretty thin. It was young and thin, no obvious problems. It was about four feet long. I am guessing it was driven out of the mountains by older mature animals. It had traveled down to the residential area of Chaparral. It is not common for them to reside in a residential area. It indicates to me there is an issue with that animal.” According to the sheriff’s office incident report, the owner of the residence reported that the mountain lion tried to attack her while she was getting into her vehicle. – For complete article go to

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Alachua County

Florida 07/17/12 Alachua County: Officials say EEE has been detected in a sentinel chicken. County health director Anthony Dennis told a newspaper a human case of EEE was reported in Holmes County last week, but the person had also spent time in Washington County. – See

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Fairfield County

Connecticut 07/17/12 Greenwich, Fairfield County: Health officials announced Tuesday that mosquitoes caught last week as part of the Connecticut Mosquito Management Program in Old Greenwich have tested positive for the WNV. – See

Delaware 07/16/12 Newark, New Castle County: A crow that was taken to the Delaware Public Health Lab by members of the Tri-State Bird Rescue in Newark tested positive for WNV a week ago.  The bird was collected in the Newark area prompting increased mosquito surveillance and monitoring. – See

Cook County

Illinois 07/17/12 Glencoe, Cook County: North Shore Mosquito Abatement District officials confirm a pool of mosquitoes collected on June 27 has tested positive for WNV. – See

Suffolk County

Massachusetts 07/16/12 West Roxbury, Suffolk County: The second case of WNV-infected mosquitoes in Boston was found in West Roxbury last week. A sample from one mosquito pool collected July 9, came back with positive results for the virus on July 12, said Boston Public Health Commission spokeswoman Katinka Podmaniczky on Monday. – See

Warren County

New Jersey 07/17/12 Warren County: A group of 75 Culex mosquitoes collected in Harmony and a crow collected in Washington Borough both tested positive for WNV. The mosquitoes were collected on Tuesday, July 3, in a trap specifically designed to catch Culex mosquitoes, the type of mosquito responsible for transmitting the virus, especially from bird to bird. – See

Pittsburg County

Oklahoma 07/17/12 McAlester, Pittsburg County: A human case of WNV is one of only two cases found statewide so far this year. The other case is in Tulsa County. “ The individual with the confirmed case of WNV in Pittsburg County has been identified by the health department only as a man “in the age 65 or older category,” Coffman said. – See

Tarrant County

Texas 07/17/12 Tarrant County: Physicians and hospitals report 16 human cases of WNV so far in the county this year, according to officials with the public health department. Nine of the cases have been the more serious neuro-invasive strain of the virus, while seven cases have been diagnosed as West Nile fever, said Sandra Parker, Tarrant County public health medical director and health authority. No deaths attributable to the virus have been reported in Tarrant County. “This fits the definition of an epidemic,” Parker said. “The most important thing I think the numbers say is that we need to do what we can to prevent the illness.” – See


Maine 07/16/12 Thorndike, Waldo County: Michael Topich, 47, had eleven eight-week-old puppies in his backyard and recently found a skunk had broken into their fenced-in area. The skunk was dragging one of the puppies, so Topich grabbed it by the back of the neck to save the pup, coming in contact with the skunk’s saliva at the same time. As an afterthought, he decided to have the skunk tested for rabies and it came back positive. He has since received post-exposure rabies treatments, and all of the puppies had to be euthanized. – See

New York 07/16/12 Whitestone, Oneida County: A gray fox that attacked a domestic cat in Whitestown last week has tested positive for rabies, according to a news release from the county health department. The fox was reported to be running around in a residential area near Judd Road July 11 before the attack on July 12, according to the release. – See

MINNESOTA triathlete bitten 25 times by OTTER in northern lake ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CA, MS, NY (2), & TX (fatality) ~ RABIES reports from AR, MD, NY, NC (2), & SC ~ CDC REPORTS: ZOONOTIC DISEASE summary for week ending June 23, 2012.

Otter. Photo by Keven Law. Wikimedia Commons.

Minnesota 07/15/12 A veteran triathlete had to get rabies shots after she was attacked and bitten 25 times by an otter in a northern Minnesota lake. Leah Prudhomme, 33, of Anoka, was doing a regular 1.5-mile training swim in Island Lake, 17 miles north of Duluth, on Wednesday evening. As she passed by a bog on the last stretch, she felt something bite her ankle to the bone: an otter. She screamed for help as her father and young children watched from the shore. Prudhomme sustained 25 bites — some more than 2 inches deep — before her father could rescue her in a boat about seven minutes later. “It had a gray head, little beaded eyes, and was very agile in the water. … It would just like latch onto my leg and latch onto my thigh,” Prudhomme said. At St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth, she got shots for rabies and tetanus, plus antibiotics. She got more rabies shots back home in the Twin Cities on Saturday.

Photo by Alan Pennington. Wikimedia Commons.

The rare attack baffled experts who surmise the otter had rabies or was a mother protecting its young. “I’ve never seen or heard of it before,” said Mike Scott, a conservation officer with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources in Duluth. “We’ve got otters everywhere … lakes, streams. Most times, (swimmers) wouldn’t even know it. Otters usually stay away.” Prudhomme said she’s thankful she wore her wet suit, which was shredded in the attack but likely saved her from more extensive injuries. “My wetsuit tells the tale best because there’s just claw marks and chunks missing and lots of bites all over the wetsuit,” she said. “It’s pretty much destroyed now.” Prudhomme also said she still plans to compete in a triathlon on the same lake next Sunday. Fortunately, the swimming portion is set to take place on the other side of the lake. “I’m scared, but it’s one of those things you don’t want to let get the best of you,” she said. “It’s not like I’ll be bitten by another otter.”

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Sacramento County

California 07/16/12 Sacramento County: Risk of WNV continues to be high in South Sacramento County especially in the areas of Wilton and Elk Grove. Officials confirmed that 50 mosquito samples tested positive for WNV. – See

Jones County

Mississippi 07/16/12 Jones County: The state’s fourth human case of WNV this year has been confirmed in Jones County. The state Department of Health reported the new laboratory-confirmed WNV case today. So far this year, cases have been reported in Lauderdale, Hancock, Lincoln and Jones counties, according to the Health Department. Mississippi had 52 West Nile virus cases and five deaths last year. – See|topnews|text|Home

Nassau County

New York 07/16/12 Massapequa, Nassau County: A mosquito carrying WNV has been found in a trap in Massapequa according to the Department of Health. In total, the virus has been detected in mosquitoes at 4 trap locations in Nassau County including Bayville, Lakeview and Mineola. – See

Rockland County

New York 07/16/12 Rockland County: Nine more mosquito samples collected have tested positive for WNV – bringing the total so far to 15, the highest level this early in the season since the virus appeared more than a decade ago. All of the mosquito samples were collected by the Rockland Department of Health during the week of July 2. They were tested by the state Department of Health and results were announced today. Four of the insects were found in Orangetown, two each in Ramapo and Clarkstown and one in Haverstraw. – See

Dallas County

Texas 07/16/12 Dallas, Dallas County: The city of Dallas confirmed Monday that one person has died after contracting WNV. In a news conference, city officials announced the man was in his 60s and lived in the 75204 zip code near East Dallas. They also said they are fearful of another severe outbreak such as the one in 2006, when 104 people in Dallas County were infected and four died from the virus. So far this summer, there have been 16 human cases of WNV in Dallas County. – See


Arkansas 07/13/12 Little Rock, Pulaski County: The management of Albert Pike apartments will have to appear in court after bats were found inside tenant’s rooms and the problem was not corrected. Little Rock code enforcement confirmed one of those bats tested positive for rabies. – See

Maryland 07/13/12 Chevy Chase, Montgomery County: A man reportedly was bitten twice by a fox in the Village of Martin’s Additions on Wednesday and was taken to a hospital for precautionary rabies shots. The fox has not been located. See –

New York 07/13/12 Onondaga County: Three raccoons have tested positive for rabies, prompting the county Health Department to warn the public not to touch or feed wild animals. The rabid raccoons were located near Cold Brook Road in the town of Spafford, Barker Street in the town of Otisco and Shea Road in the town of Pompey, according to the Health Department. – See

North Carolina 07/14/12 Farmville, Pitt County: A Farmville family had to have its pet dog euthanized Friday.  According to officials, the unvaccinated dog was bitten by a raccoon that tested positive for rabies. – See

North Carolina 07/13/12 Denton, Davidson County: A dead raccoon found has become the fourth reported case of rabies in the county this year, according to the health department. The raccoon was found in a fenced-in backyard with four dogs. Two of the dogs were properly vaccinated and received booster shots. The other two dogs’ vaccinations had expired, and they were euthanized. No person was exposed. – See

South Carolina 07/13/12 Horry County: A bat found in the county has tested positive for rabies, according to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. A person was bitten by the bat. DHEC does not comment on medical treatment victims may be receiving, but it is standard practice for people bitten by rabid animals to undergo immediate medical treatment. “In this case, the victim was aware of the bat bite,” said Sue Ferguson, with DHEC. “However, bats have small teeth that might leave marks not easily seen. Some situations require medical advice even in the absence of an obvious bite wound. If you awaken and find a bat in your room, often referred to as ‘overnighting,’ or if you see a bat in the room of an unattended child, or near a mentally impaired or intoxicated person, seek medical advice and have the bat tested.” According to the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most of the recent human rabies cases in the U.S. have been caused by exposure to rabid bats. – See

CDC Reports:

CDC MMWR Summary for Week ending June 23, 2012:

Published June 29, 2012/ 61(25); ND-339-ND-352

Anaplasmosis . . . 21 . . . New York (17), Rhode Island (2), Virginia (2),

Babesiosis . . . 5 . . . New York (5),

Brucellosis . . . 1 . . . Florida,  

Ehrlichiosis . . . 11 . . . Maine, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, Tennessee (2), Virginia (5),

Giardiasis . . . 117 . . . Arizona, Arkansas (2), California (20), District of Columbia, Florida (22), Idaho (2), Iowa (2), Maine (3), Maryland (4), Montana (3), Nebraska (6), New York (26), Ohio (15), Rhode Island, Vermont, (3) Virginia (2),

HME/HGE Undetermined . . . 4 . . . Indiana (3), Virginia

Lyme Disease . . .  137. . .  Connecticut, Florida (5), Maryland (11), Pennsylvania (76), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (9), Virginia (31),

Q Fever (Chronic) . . . 1 . . . Nebraska, 

Rabies (Animal) . . . 20. . . Alabama (4), Rhode Island (2), Texas (2), Vermont, Virginia (11),

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Confirmed) . . . 1. . . Indiana,

Spotted Fever including Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Probable) . . . 24 . . . Alabama (2), Indiana, Tennessee (5), Virginia (16),

Tularemia . . . 1 . . . Montana.

CALIFORNIA reports the lone WOLF known as OR-7 entered Butte County late last month ~ CALIFORNIA vector control officials trap DEER MOUSE infected with HANTAVIRUS ~ ALASKAN WOMAN survives GRIZZLY BEAR encounter shaken but unscathed ~ CANADA: SASKATCHEWAN confirms new case of CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE in an ELK ~ MOUNTAIN LION report from MT ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS reports from FL (3), & MA ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CA (2), ID, IL, LA (fatality), MS, NJ, NY, & SD.

Gray wolf (not OR-7). Courtesy U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

California 07/14/12 by Katy Sweeny – Anyone looking to find California’s lone wolf since it entered Butte County June 28 would have had little luck. The Department of Fish and Game’s website placed it in northeast Butte County, but DFG regional wildlife program manager Karen Kovacs said it was closer to Highway 70 along the Plumas County line. OR7 is the only wolf known to be in California, Kovacs said. The last confirmed wolf in the state was in 1924. The wolf’s collar showed since Monday it moved north in Butte County and crossed Thursday into northwestern Plumas County, Kovacs said. The 2-year-old wolf left his pack in Oregon to find a mate and start a new pack, Kovacs said. He crossed into California Dec. 28. While most wolves go no more than 100 miles, OR7 has traveled about 2,500 miles. – For complete article see

Deer mouse. Courtesy CDC.

California 07/13/12 A wild deer mouse trapped in north Escondido during routine monitoring tested positive for the potentially deadly hantavirus, San Diego County vector control officials announced Friday. According to the county Department of Environmental Health, it is not easy for humans to contract hantavirus but if an infection does happen, it causes Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, which is fatal 36 percent of the time. Department Director Jack Miller said infected mice, which are discovered every so often, are rarely a danger in the wild. “But hantavirus can be a danger if infected rodents get indoors and people come into contact with their droppings,” Miller said. “People should never sweep up or vacuum rodent droppings or nesting materials when they find them, but use bleach solutions and sponges or mops to carefully clean up instead.” The county’s website has detailed instructions online at

Grizzly. Courtesy National Park Service.

Alaska 07/15/12 An Alaskan woman, Alyson Jones-Robinson had a recent terrorizing encounter with a grizzly bear that left her wising she had had a gun in her hand instead of insect repellant. How close was the bear to her during this encounter?  “It was a very surreal experience,” the 43-year-old Jones-Robinson told the Fairbanks Daily News Miner on Friday, a day after the ordeal. “All I could think about was this bear is so close to me I can see its teeth. I could have kissed it. I wished I had a gun.” Robinson was out hiking with her two nieces, 13 and 9, and her Husky dog Rowyn. They were hiking the 15-mile “Granite Tors Trail” in the Chena River State Recreation Area about 40 miles east of Fairbanks on Thursday. That’s when they were confronted on the trail by a young grizzly that Jones-Robinson estimated to be only 2 to 3 years old and maybe 100 to 200 pounds, not large as adult grizzlies go but the thing was that bear was big enough, aggressive, it would not back down and she knew they were all in trouble.

 The bear had bluff charged the group several times after they encountered it on the trail about five miles from the trailhead and it showed no fear of them or the dog. She told the newspaper it was so terrifying that on a scale of 1 to 10, it was above a ten. “I told the girls if the bear attacked me to take the dog and don’t look back, to get off the mountain and go until they found somebody,” Jones-Robinson told the newspaper At one point she fired off some bear spray but she fell backward on her pack and dropped the can of bear spray. The bear retreated for a moment but then came back and began circling Jones-Robinson, who then took her pack off and threw a package of macaroni and cheese at the bear hoping to distract it. As the bear circled she searched into the dog’s pack for the bottle of Natrapel, a natural mosquito repellent she uses because she’s allergic to traditional bug spray. When the bear tried to bite her dog, Jones-Robinson hit it in the head with her walking stick.  By now the girls were cowering behind their aunt, as was the dog. “It charged again, and I hit it over the head and held out my bug spray like this,” Jones-Robinson said, brandishing the bottle of Natrapel in front of her. “I hit it like three or four times.”

The dog, meanwhile, tried to attack the bear each time it charged, adding to the chaos but also possibly adding to the protection of the hiking group. She said after what seemed like an eternity the bear finally retreated and group continued toward the trailhead with Jones-Robinson carrying her broken walking stick and bottle of insect repellent. But it wasn’t over yet.  The bear followed the hikers for about a mile, bluff charging them several more times before it finally wandered off.  – For complete article see


Saskatchewan 07/13/ by Ragnar Haagen – A new case of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) has been confirmed within the past month. It is only the second case of CWD found this year, but both have been found in the Prince Albert district – which stretches approximately from Spiritwood to the Manitoba border. This is one of the three areas where the disease is present in the wild; the others are in the northwest and the southwest parts of the province. “In those three areas we have a lot of the disease in the wild and then it tends to spill over into farm animals, and in this case it was in that northeast area,” explained Alex McIsaac, a disease control veterinarian with the CFIA. The latest animal that tested positive was an Elk, and because there is no known treatment or cure for this relatively new disease there is an eradication policy in place when dealing with any possible outbreak. – For complete article see

Mountain Lion Sighting:

Montana 07/14/12 Sidney, Richland County: The sheriff’s office notified local police of a mountain lion sighting in the Lone Tree Creek area off the Fifth St. S.W. extension by the back of the county fairgrounds. – See

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Glades County

Florida 07/13/12 Moore Haven, Glades County: FDACS officials have confirmed that a horse has contracted EEE. This is the 11th horse in the state to be reported with EEE infection with onset during 2012 and the first in Glades County. – See

Nassau County

Florida 07/13/12 Callahan, Nassau County: Two sentinel chickens have tested positive for EEE virus. – See

Walton County

Florida 07/14/12 Walton County: Several sentinel chickens have tested positive for EEE. – See

Plymouth County

Massachusetts 07/13/12 Carver, Plymouth County: Five mosquitoes infected with EEE have been found and officials are bracing for a danger that has appeared early this year. – See

West Nile Virus (WNV):

San Bernadino County

California 07/14/12 Rancho Cucamonga, San Bernadino County: WNV has been found in mosquitoes collected here near Base Line Road and Beryl Street in the first reported incident of West Nile this year. – See

Contra Costa County

California 07/13/12 Brentwood, Contra Costa County: WNV has been found in two birds and two mosquito samples. One mosquito sample was taken from Garin Parkway and Spruce Street and the other was taken from Chestnut Street and Sellers Avenue. A dead crow found July 2 at Balfour Road and Walnut Boulevard in Brentwood also tested positive, as did a dead crow found at Margie Drive and Susan Lane in Pleasant Hill. – See

Ada County

Idaho 07/13/12 Boise, Ada County: The first mosquitoes testing positive for WNV were trapped near the Expo Idaho fairgrounds, prompting a warning from health officials because the virus has been detected much earlier than last year when it didn’t show up in the state until August. – See

Kane County

Illinois 07/14/12 Kane County: Three more pools of mosquitoes collected this week in Aurora, Montgomery and Carpentersville have tested positive for WNV. – See

Louisiana 07/14/12 Simpson, Vernon Parish: Former village postmaster Donnie Merchant, 68, has died due to complications after contracting WNV. There have been ten confirmed human cases of WNV in the state this year, including six that were announced on Friday. – See

Mississippi 07/14/12 Lauderdale and Hancock counties: Health officials have confirmed two human cases of WNV in the state. – See

Ocean County

New Jersey 07/13/12 Ocean County: A crow in Point Borough and a mosquito pool in Point Pleasant Beach have tested positive for WNV. – See

Suffolk County

New York 07/14/12 Suffolk County: Six mosquito samples have tested positive for WNV in the county, including two in Nesconset. Positive samples were also found in Farmingville, Northport, Dix Hills, and Amagansett. – See

South Dakota 07/14/12 Beadle County: A healthy blood donor is the first known human case of WNV in the state this year. – See|head&nclick_check=1