Tag Archives: Mosquitoes

Will CHIKUNGUNYA FEVER spread to the U.S.? ~ TRAVEL WARNINGS: CHIKUNGUNYA spreads throughout eastern CARIBBEAN ~ MISSISSIPPI reports first WEST NILE VIRUS case of 2014 ~ MEXICAN GRAY WOLD population highest since reintroduction 16 years ago ~ RABIES reports from AZ, & GA.

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Western Hemisphere 02/10/14 livescience.com: by Marc Lallanilla – Health experts are concerned that chikungunya fever — a debilitating mosquito-borne disease that was once confined to Africa and Asia — has now spread to the Caribbean and may soon begin to make its way across North and South America. An infection with the chikungunya (chik-un-GUN-ya) virus causes severe pain, high fever, headache, nausea, vomiting and rash. The name is derived from an East African word for “that which bends,” a reference to the hi_4333.chikungunyaposture adopted by infected people who are stooped over from severe joint pain. And though the disease can’t be spread directly from person to person, a mosquito that bites a person who’s infected with the virus can easily spread the disease by biting another person, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The spread of chikungunya was first reported by the World Health Organization (WHO) in December 2013, after 10 residents on the Caribbean island of St. Martin were confirmed to have the disease. In the months since then, chikungunya has spread to other Caribbean countries, including popular tourist destinations such as Guadeloupe, Martinique and the British Virgin Islands.

Will chikungunya spread to the US?

0209-web-subCARIBBEANmap.chikungunyaThe disease isn’t unknown in the United States, but all previous documented cases have been in people who traveled outside the U.S. to countries where chikungunya is established, and were not caused by infected mosquitos within the U.S. That may change, however, since the mosquitos that carry the virus —Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus — are already found in the U.S. Some experts worry that it’s only a matter of time before chikungunya fever spreads to the U.S. “We definitely should be concerned,” said Laura Harrington, a professor of entomology at Cornell University who specializes in the spread of chikungunya and other tropical diseases. The death rate from chikungunya is fairly low — about 1 to 2 percent — “but it does cause a lot of discomfort,” Harrington told LiveScience. Most of the deaths caused by the disease are among the elderly or people with compromised immune systems.- For complete article see http://www.livescience.com/43241-what-is-chikungunya-fever-virus-mosquito.html

TRAVEL WARNINGS:

saim-LMAP-mdEastern Caribbean 02/08/14 theglobaldispatch.com: Since the chikungunya virus first made it’s appearance in the Western Hemisphere in early December on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin, the outbreak has continued to grow and spread throughout many parts of the region showing little sign of slowing. The newest numbers released by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) on Feb. 7 shows that the total case count is pushing 1,500, up several hundred from just one week ago. According to European authorities, as of Friday the numbers are as follows: Saint Martin (FR):  601 probable or confirmed cases, Sint Maarten (NL): 60 confirmed cases, Saint Barthélemy: 83 probable or confirmed cases, Martinique: 518 probable or confirmed cases, Guadeloupe: 175 probable or confirmed cases, British Virgin Islands, Jost Van Dyke islands: six confirmed cases and Dominica: 3 confirmed cases and 1 imported confirmed case probably originating from Saint Martin. The Dominica number may be updated very soon as at least one news source from the island, Dominica News Online reported Friday the case count is now actually 13. In addition to the autochthonous cases reported above, imported cases have been reported from French Guiana: 4 confirmed imported cases: 3 from Martinique and 1 from Saint Martin, with no evidence of local transmission, one imported confirmed case on the Island of Anguilla probably originating from Saint Martin and one imported case reported on the Aruba.

lancet80-4-5ui76In a paper in The Lancet published today, researchers state:

It is likely that the chikungunya epidemic will extend to other Caribbean islands, and it also has substantial potential for spreading from this region visited yearly by millions of tourists to the American mainland where A aegypti is endemic. Assuming that this strain will be transmitted efficiently by A albopictus mosquitoes, its persistence in the Caribbean would also represent, as a consequence of seasonal synchronicity, a great threat for southern European countries where the mosquito has recently dispersed. This situation warrants reinforced epidemiological surveillance and specific preparedness.

CDC-LogoThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released an updated travel notice for those going to the Caribbean islands on Thursday saying, “Travelers who go to these islands in the Caribbean are at risk of getting chikungunya.” Chikungunya is an illness caused by a virus that spreads through mosquito bites. The most common symptoms of chikungunya are fever and joint pain. Other symptoms may include headache, muscle pain, joint swelling, or rash.

West Nile Virus (WNV):

HindsCountyMSMississippi 02/10/14 Hinds County: Officials have confirmed the state’s first human case of WNV for 2014. Last year, 45 human cases of WNV were reported in the state, including five fatalities. – See http://www.wjtv.com/story/24681817/first-west-nile-virus-human-case-of-2014

 

Mexican Gray Wolves:

MW_Header_5Arizona & New Mexico 02/10/14 wmicentral.com: by Terence Corrigan – The population of Mexican gray wolves has reached its highest level since the reintroduction program released the first wolves 16 years ago near Alpine. The Interagency Field Team recently completed its annual count and determined that the minimum number of Mexican wolves is 83 –  43 in New Mexico and 37 in Arizona. The population of wolves in the wild has nearly doubled in the last four years. The count was 75 in January 2013, and 58 in 2012. In 2013, seven packs produced 17 pups that survived through December. The gain in wolf numbers was offset by seven deaths, four were killed illegally. The official number is expressed as the “minimum count” because it’s a number they’re sure of. It’s entirely likely that there are additional animals that were not seen. Preparation for the annual survey begins in September and October on the ground with field team members confirming locations of animals that are fitted with telemetry collars. In January the official count begins with an aerial telemetry survey from an airplane. The airplane survey is followed by a visual count from a helicopter.

r_gray_wolf_pups1The field team currently has a pair of wolves in a pen in the forest and plans to release them sometime in the early spring. There is also a pair being held in captivity that Fish and Wildlife plans to release this year. The management policy now is to release only a pair with newly born pups which tends to keep them near the release site. In the past newly released single animals have bolted from the release site and strayed far outside the boundaries where wolves are currently allowed to be. All of the wolves counted were born in the wild, which program personnel say bodes well for success. Wild born pups “seem to have what it takes to survive … and not get into trouble as relates to human interactions,” said Dr. Benjamin Tuggle, Southwest Regional Director of U.S. Fish and Wildlife. – For complete article see http://www.wmicentral.com/news/apache_county/wolf-population-increases-to/article_119b47ba-8f8c-11e3-bea4-001a4bcf887a.html

 Rabies:

striped-skunks-01_000Arizona 02/10/14 Pima and Santa Cruz counties: State officials have issued a Rabies Alert in two southern counties effective immediately. Thirteen skunks have tested positive for the virus in these areas. – See https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/?shva=1#inbox/14423701dbe07afc

Georgia 02/09/14 White County: A skunk that was in contact with a female dog and her litter of puppies has tested positive for rabies. The incident occurred in the 4700 block of Highway 254. An earlier case of the virus was reported last month just two blocks away. – See http://www.accessnorthga.com/detail.php?n=270963

New study suggests LYME DISEASE may be sexually transmitted ~ RABIES reports from AZ, GA, MD, NY NCx2, OK, TXx4, VA, & WY ~ TRAVEL WARNING: CHIKUNGUNYA reaching epidemic proportions in eastern CARIBBEAN.

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North America 01/20/14 afmr.org: A new study suggests that Lyme disease may be sexually transmitted. The study was presented at the annual Western Regional Meeting of the American Federation for Medical Research, and an abstract of the research was published in the January issue of the Journal of Investigative Medicine. “Our findings will change the way Lyme disease is viewed by doctors and patients,” said Marianne Middelveen, lead author of the study presented in Carmel. “It explains why the disease is more common than one would think if only ticks were involved in transmission.”

AFMR-Logo-TopIn the study, researchers tested semen samples and vaginal secretions from three groups of patients: control subjects without evidence of Lyme disease, random subjects who tested positive for Lyme disease, and married heterosexual couples engaging in unprotected sex who tested positive for the disease. As expected, all of the control subjects tested negative for Borrelia burgdorferi in semen samples or vaginal secretions. In contrast, all women with Lyme disease tested positive for Borrelia burgdorferi in vaginal secretions, while about half of the men with Lyme disease tested positive for the Lyme spirochete in semen samples. Furthermore, one of the heterosexual couples with Lyme disease showed identical strains of the Lyme spirochete in their genital secretions. “The presence of the Lyme spirochete in genital secretions and identical strains in married couples strongly suggests that sexual transmission of the disease occurs,” said Dr. Mayne. “We don’t yet understand why women with Lyme disease have consistently positive vaginal secretions, whilst semen samples are more variable. Obviously there is more work to be done here.” – See press release at http://www.onlineprnews.com/news/454866-1390261507-lyme-disease-may-be-sexually-transmitted-study-suggests.html

Rabies:

3821fefe9b4884850185047e22654718Arizona 01/23/14 Pima County: A skunk found in the middle of a busy trail at Catalina State Park on January 21st has tested positive for rabies. A ranger found the animal surrounded by 30 or more people, some with pets, and it’s unknown if there was any contact, which could require post-exposure treatment. – See http://tucsoncitizen.com/pima-county-news/2014/01/23/skunk-with-rabies-found-among-hikers-at-catalina-state-park/

ebf690e90681d99a574659bc81d78f29Georgia 01/16/14 Harris County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert after a fox attacked two pets in Catuala on Preston Road Jan 14th. The fox has since tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.wtvm.com/story/24471421/breaking

Maryland 01/23/14 Carroll County: A stray cat found in the York Road area of Manchester has tested positive for rabies. The cat was a domestic short hair with a gray and white coat. Anyone who might have been exposed should seed immediate medical advice. – See http://westminster.patch.com/groups/police-and-fire/p/manchester-area-stray-cat-tests-positive-for-rabies

Horse%20TeethNew York 01/26/14 Herkimer County: A horse stabled in the town of Newport has tested positive for rabies. See http://www.littlefallstimes.com/article/20140126/NEWS/140129449

North Carolina 01/21/14 Wake County: A Rabies Alert was issued today for Wendell after a raccoon that came in contact with a dog tested positive for the virus. The incident occurred in the vicinity of Wood Green Drive and Deer Lake Trail. – See http://www.easternwakenews.com/2014/01/21/3552717/wake-county-issues-rabies-notice.html

Raccoon-SiedePreis-smNorth Carolina 01/18/14 Wake County: A raccoon that was in contact with a family and its pets in the vicinity of Winding Way and Friendship Road in Apex on January 17th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.newsobserver.com/2014/01/18/3544888/rabid-raccoon-found-in-apex.html

Oklahoma 01/19/14 Pottawatomie County:  An unvaccinated dog that fought with a skunk in the backyard of its owner’s home in south Shawnee has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.news-star.com/article/20140117/NEWS/140119668/-1/sports

Texas 01/20/14 Hill County: A cat that bit a woman on the toe January 14th has tested positive for rabies. The incident occurred at the woman’s residence on First Street in Mount Calm. The woman and her daughter, 9, are being treated for potential exposure to the virus, and seven other cats at the residence were impounded and will be euthanized. – See http://hillsbororeporter.com/rabies-case-reported-in-mount-calm-p17289-54.htm

090828-free-tailed-bats-love-songs_bigTexas 01/20/14 Lackland Air Force Base: The U.S. Air Force is vaccinating more than 200 recruits against rabies after bats were found in their dorms on Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland. The Air Force stressed that it did not consider the situation an emergency, but was “exercising an abundance of caution”.  Bats were seen in only four of the 20 dorms in the complex and one that was captured is being tested for the virus. – See http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/military/article/Lackland-recruits-get-rabies-shots-after-bats-5157522.php

imagesj88d7dTexas 01/20/14 West Texas: The Texas Department of State Health Services is preparing to launch its 20th annual airdrop of rabies vaccine in portions of the state. The effort has successfully eliminated the canine strain of rabies and virtually eliminated the fox strain of rabies in Texas by vaccinating coyotes and gray foxes in a wide swath of southern and western Texas over the last 20 years. Now, the Oral Rabies Vaccination Program is testing an expanded effort to vaccinate skunks. The 2014 ORVP will begin with planes taking off from an airport in Del Rio on January 15 and from Zapata and Alpine on or about January 21. Those aircraft will drop vaccine baits over rural areas along the Rio Grande to maintain protection against rabies as animals migrate in and out of the state. “Skunks and bats are now the animals in Texas most likely to have and spread rabies,” said Dr. Laura Robinson, ORVP director. “Early tests involving skunks have been promising, and we’re hopeful that expanding our study area will help show us the best way to eliminate skunk rabies in Texas.” A small bait drop will occur on or about January 25 in an area centered on the Concho/McCulloch county line where a single cow tested positive for the Texas fox strain of rabies in 2013. Finally, starting on or about January 26 DSHS will begin the expanded effort to vaccinate skunks. Baits will be dropped over rural areas and wildlife habitats in the expanded skunk study zone, covering an area from Madison and Walker counties running southwest to Bastrop County then southeast to Waller County. – See http://bigbendnow.com/2014/01/aerial-vaccine-drops-to-combat-rabies-begins-next-week-in-far-west-texas/

Texas 01/15/14 Collin County: A skunk that came in contact with a pet in the vicinity of West Parker and Midway roads in Plano has tested positive for a - Copyrabies. – See http://planoblog.dallasnews.com/2014/01/skunk-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-west-plano.html/

Virginia 01/22/14 Henrico County: A skunk found dead near a dog pen in a homeowner’s backyard last week has tested positive for rabies. Police say two dogs were exposed and will be quarantined. – See http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/skunk-in-henrico-tests-positive-for-rabies/2014/01/22/4fea0e62-833d-11e3-a273-6ffd9cf9f4ba_story.html

Wyoming 01/21/14 Goshen County: A Rabies Alert has been issued county-wide after three skunks and a house cat tested positive for the virus. The cat bit its owner, who has been treated for potential exposure to rabies. – See http://www.kgoskerm.com/news/regional-news/stories/871-rabies-virus-in-goshen-county

Travel Warning:

chikungunyaCaribbean Basin 01/23/14 fodors.com: by Catie L’Heureux – Several Caribbean islands are facing a mosquito-borne virus outbreak, with more than 480 cases reported in the region as of January 20th. Fortunately, there’s no need to cancel your winter getaway yet—but be sure to keep track of the latest news on the virus and take any necessary precautions before traveling there.  Caribbean’s Mosquito-Borne Virus Prompts Travel Precautions First, the facts: The chikungunya virus is spread by bites from an infected female Aedes aegypti mosquito, and this is the first time the virus has appeared in the Caribbean. Since the disease was first recorded in 1952, it has affected millions of people in Africa and Asia. In December 2013, there were only 10 confirmed cases in St. Martin. Now, according to a January 20th report from the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), “confirmed/probable” chikungunya virus cases are present in the following islands: St. Martin with the highest number of 294 cases and the death of an elderly man who contracted the virus but was already severely ill; Martinique, 127; St. Barthelemy , 31; Guadeloupe , 27; Saint Maarten, three; British Virgin Islands, three; Dominica, one; and French Guiana, one.

joint_painThe most common symptoms, which can take up to seven days to appear, include high fever and joint pain in the wrists and ankles. Although symptoms often last three to 10 days, joint pain can last longer and be more debilitating, but severe hospitalization cases are rare. Because there is no vaccine to prevent or cure the virus, treatment focuses on allieviating the symptoms. “The fact that it is a new virus to the region, that is why this is such a concern,” a medical entomologist who works for CARPHA said. She noted that there are high populations of the Aedes aegypti mosquito in all of the Caribbean islands. People also frequently travel between the islands, which helps spread the virus. CARPHA, the World Health Organization, and other key organizations are working to reduce the outbreak by eliminating the mosquitoes’ potential breeding sites. The good news? “There is no need to cancel plans,” the CARPHA medical entomologist said. “We’re not at that point. None of our borders have been closed.”

WEST NILE VIRUS kills 27 BALD EAGLES in UTAH ~ COLORADO town warns residents of MOUNTAIN LIONS ~ CHIKUNGUNYA in the CARIBBEAN poses threat to U.S. ~ Vets say research needed on LYME DISEASE in HORSES ~ RABIES reports from FLx2, & VA.

Bald Eagle. Bing free use license.

Bald Eagle. Bing free use license.

Utah 12/31/13 ctvnews.ca: by Michelle L. Price – The mystery illness that has killed 27 bald eagles in Utah this month appears to be West Nile Virus, state officials said Tuesday. The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources said in a statement that laboratory tests done on some of the first birds found indicate they died from West Nile Virus. Since Dec. 1, officials have found the birds in northern and central Utah. All were either dead or were ill and later died during treatment. The eagles displayed similar symptoms, including head tremors, signs of seizures, weakness in legs and feet and a paralysis of the bird’s wings. Beyond the 27 that have died, officials said five eagles were being treated at a wildlife rehabilitation centre Tuesday. They appeared to be responding well to treatment, officials said. Utah wildlife officials aren’t sure how the eagles caught the virus, but they suspect the birds contracted it by eating Eared Grebes that were infected with the virus and died recently.

Eared Grebe.

Eared Grebe.

West Nile Virus, which is spread by mosquitoes, usually infects eagles and other birds during warmer months. Mark Hadley, a Utah Division of Wildlife Resources spokesman, said the grebes, a duck-like aquatic bird, start arriving in Utah in October, when mosquitoes are still active. “It’s possible that those grebes got bit by mosquitoes after they got here when they arrived in the fall, and it just took a while for them to die.” The bald eagles began arriving in November and appeared to have died relatively quickly once they contracted the virus, Hadley said. About 750 to 1,200 bald eagles begin migrating to Utah each November and stay until March, officials said. During those winter months, the eagles get most of their food by eating dead animals, such as grebes.

Flock of Bald eaglesLeslie McFarlane, a wildlife disease coordinator with DWR, said in a statement that there’s still a chance a few more eagles could die, but because the migration period for grebes is almost over, it’s likely that the risk to eagles will soon drop. The birds do not pose a risk to human health but people should not handle eagles if they find them, wildlife officials said. Hadley said that in the 17 years he’s been with DWR, he has never seen this many eagles die off, particularly in such a short period of time. – See http://www.ctvnews.ca/sci-tech/west-nile-virus-caused-27-bald-eagle-deaths-in-december-utah-wildlife-officials-1.1613441

Mountain Lions:

s_mountain-lion-0002Colorado 12/27/13 Douglas County: The town of Parker may be 20 miles from the foothills, but officials sent an e-mail to residents on Thursday warning that mountain lions have been sighted inside the town limits. It cautioned residents not to walk or hike alone, and to make sure children are within sight at all times. – For additional advice see http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/local-news/parker-issues-warning-after-mountain-lions-spotted

Chikungunya:

Follow-Up Report:

(See CHIKUNGUNYA virus spreads in the AMERICAS posted 12/15/13)

pic_chikungunyaCaribbean Islands 12/30/13 cidrap.umn.edu: by Lisa Schnirring – Health officials are reporting a sharp rise in the number of patients sickened in a chikungunya fever outbreak centered on the Caribbean island of St. Martin, which may signal an increasing risk to the US mainland. On the French part of the island, where most of the infections have been reported, the number of confirmed cases has risen from 26 to 66, according to a Dec 28 update from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). In addition, health officials from the Netherlands have confirmed the first case on the Dutch side of St. Martin (Sint Maarten), and illnesses have been detected on two other nearby islands: three on Martinique and one on Guadeloupe, according to the ECDC report. Both of those islands are south and slightly east of St. Martin. The case in Guadeloupe represents the island’s first documented local chikungunya case, which was detected because of enhanced surveillance for the disease in all French Caribbean territories, the ECDC said. The patient is co-infected with dengue serotype 4 and had not recently traveled to another area where chikungunya exists. Meanwhile, health officials in the area are investigating a slew of suspected and probable cases. They include 167 suspected cases and 14 probable cases on the French side of St. Martin, and two patients have been hospitalized. Martinique has 27 suspected cases, and on the island of St. Barthelemy, 21 suspected cases are under investigation. The outbreak represents the first known indigenous transmission of chikungunya fever in the Americas. – For complete article and precautions see http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2013/12/caribbean-chikungunya-outbreak-grows-poses-threat-us

Lyme Disease:

aaep_logoNational 12/30/13 thehorse.com: by Amy Johnson, DVM – It is hard to get a roomful of people to agree on anything, but just about every veterinarian attending the Lyme disease table topic session at the 2013 American Association of Equine Practitioners convention, held Dec. 7-11 in Nashville, Tenn., agreed that more research is needed on this disease in horses. We do know that Lyme disease is an increasingly recognized problem in people living in areas where the causative organism, Borrelia burgdorferi, is endemic. These areas include the northeast and north-central United States. We also know that Borrelia is capable of infecting horses. Despite only a handful of published case reports describing clinical signs in infected horses, many practitioners in endemic areas are convinced that they see cases of Lyme disease in horses. The most common signs in these cases are behavior changes, lethargy or poor attitude, and change in gait/lameness. Uveitis (inflammation within the eye) and neuroborreliosis (neurologic disease due to Lyme disease) are occasionally seen as well. So if a horse is showing possible signs of Lyme disease, how can it be diagnosed? vetSeveral blood tests are available that will identify antibodies against Borrelia. The presence of antibodies (in an unvaccinated horse) indicates that the horse has been infected with Borrelia at some point in its life. The pattern of antibody production might help to ascertain whether infection is acute or chronic. However, more research is needed regarding patterns of antibody production in infected horses. – For complete article see http://www.thehorse.com/articles/33123/aaep-researchers-discuss-lyme-disease-in-horses

Rabies:

thumbnailCA6WGA0CFlorida 12/31/13 Hamilton County: A bobcat that attacked a dog in Jennings has tested positive for rabies. A Rabies Alert has been issued within the boundaries of CR 141 North, CR 143 North, and CR 146. – See http://www.suwanneedemocrat.com/jasper/x1956145775/Health-officials-in-Hamilton-County-issue-rabies-alert

10975940 - CopyFlorida 12/30/13 Palm Beach County: Two raccoons that attacked dogs in West Palm Beach and Jupiter Farms last week have tested positive for rabies. And a third raccoon that attacked a dog near A1A in Tequesta over the weekend is presumed rabid. – See http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/news/two-raccoons-that-attacked-dogs-in-west-palm-beach/ncYDM/

337278_koshka_kot_rebenok_ditya_devochka_kosichka_ulybka_2990x2170_(www.GdeFon.ru)Virginia 12/30/13 Prince William County: A domestic cat that appeared to be injured was picked up near Powells Landing Circle in Woodbridge on December 20th and has since tested positive for rabies. – See http://manassas.patch.com/groups/police-and-fire/p/cat-with-rabies-found-in-prince-william-county

 

CANADA: BRITISH COLUMBIAN woman and dog attacked by COYOTES while walking popular trail ~ CHIKUNGUNYA virus spreads in the AMERICAS ~ TRAVEL WARNING: 39 die of PLAGUE in MADAGASCAR ~ RABIES reports from FL, MA, NM, NC & VA.

 

Coyote. Bing free use license.

Coyote. Bing free use license.

Canada:

British Columbia 12/13/13 Okanagan: by Deborah Pfeiffer – A Summerland woman was recovering Thursday, after being attacked by what are believed to be three coyotes, while walking on a popular trail Wednesday morning. Sarah James was walking a friend’s dog Rosie on the Summerland Centennial Trail when the three animals, a large one and two smaller ones, surrounded her. Believing the small labradoodle to be in great danger, she immediately covered her with her body. “My primary focus was Rosie, absolutely, unconditionally,” she said. “I went into survival mode for her.” James coyotePacksaid she first noticed the three animals when she was walking a larger dog, a labrador retreiver cross, earlier in the morning at the bird sanctuary off of Peach Orchard Road. As they started to approach she yelled and they took off. At around 10:30 a.m., she started a second walk with Rosie on the trail that runs parallel to Peach Orchard. She was letting the dog run free and calling her back for treats, when the coyotes came out and surrounded her. Two came from the side and one from behind. She undid her ski jacket and  dove on top of the dog, covered her with her right hand and with her left hand swatted them away. “Rosie was crying up a storm and the whole thing lasted about two to three minutes, although it felt like it lasted way longer,” she said. “Then it went quiet, and they went away to the north side of the creek.” James waited about 30 seconds, comforting the small shaking dog, before picking her up and running down the trail . . .

OkanaganSgt. Stephane Lacroix with the Summerland RCMP said a police report was filed on the incident. In the report it states, James sustained major scrapes and her coat was torn to shreds, but she did not require any treatment or ambulance at the scene. He said additional patrols were made during the day and they then contacted a conservation officer. “We were advised by the conservation officer there is an increased problem with coyotes in the Summerland area and the officer has a plan in place to deal with coyote issues,” he said. The conservation officer was not available to comment on Thursday, but James said a culling of the animals was planned because there are several dens in the area, and the animals don’t have any natural predators. The fact the animals are exhibiting pack behaviour is the danger, she added. – For complete article and photos see http://www.castanet.net/news/Penticton/104627/Summerland-woman-attacked-by-coyotes

Author’s Note: A BC conservation officer killed a large coyote this week he believes was one of three referred to in previous report. – See http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/coyote-shot-dead-after-3-attack-b-c-woman-1.2463889

Chikungunya:

chikungunya091St. Martin 12/13/13 newscientist.com: by Debora MacKenzie – A dozen people on the tiny Caribbean island of St Martin have been infected with the chikungunya virus. It is the first time the mosquito-borne virus is known to have spread in the Americas. Eight years ago it spread beyond Africa, where it originated, to Eurasia. Now it has crossed the planet – and could already be more widespread than health agencies realise. Chikungunya is rarely lethal, but it is painful and can cause chronic, debilitating joint pain. On reaching Asia, it spread rapidly and made millions ill, as people had no immunity. A few experimental treatments and vaccines exist, but none has yet left the lab. Two years ago, when the Pan-American Health Organisation (PAHO), a public health agency that works in all countries in the Americas, drew up a plan for Chikungunya’s arrival, it warned that the Americas could face the same situation as Asia. “The resulting large outbreaks would likely tax existing health-care systems and the public health infrastructure,” it said, “and could potentially cripple some of society’s functioning.”

stmartincaribOn 10 December, the World Health Organization announced two confirmed cases of chikungunya in the French half of St Martin, with 10 more suspected. The people affected complained of joint pain and were initially thought to have dengue, which had been circulating on the island since January. But blood samples sent for testing in France confirmed the presence of chikungunya. The virus would have been brought to the island by a human carrier. There could yet be more cases elsewhere that have not been tested. “It cannot be excluded that a similar epidemiological situation might be ongoing in the Dutch part of the island,” says a risk assessment report by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), based in Stockholm, Sweden. “The extent of the outbreak is difficult to assess and might have remained undetected… on other islands.” French St Martin may simply have spotted chikungunya first because it is a familiar adversary. The virus’s first appearance outside Africa, in 2005, was in another French territory, the Indian Ocean island of Réunion. In the Americas, only Brazil, Canada, the US and the French territories of French Guiana, Guadeloupe and Martinique have the capability to test for the virus, says Donna Eberwine-Villagrán of PAHO. “We do not know if there are cases in other countries.” – For complete article see http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn24757-threatwatch-chikungunya-virus-spreads-in-the-americas.html#.Uq0mRxBKOUm

Travel Warning:

madagascar.flag_256Madagascar 12/12/13 thenational.ae: At least 39 people have been killed by an outbreak of bubonic plague in Madagascar in recent weeks, the country’s health ministry confirmed yesterday. “There is an epidemic in Madagascar which is madagascar.mapcurrently affecting five districts out of 112. Eighty-six people have been infected by the plague, of which 39 have died,” the ministry said. Police in the northwestern district of Mandritsara had said on Wednesday the deceased could not be treated in time. But the death toll they gave, which was 20, was revised upwards yesterday. – See http://www.thenational.ae/39-dead-in-bubonic-plague-outbreak

Rabies:

urban-raccoons-by-liz-west-ccFlorida 12/12/13 Lee County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert after receiving five reports of raccoon bites in less than three weeks. Only one of the raccoons was captured and it tested positive for the virus. It was found in the vicinity of Estero.Two people were bitten by raccoons in Fort Myers last week, and two others in Cape Coral this week, also by raccoons, but none of the animals were captured. Raccoons have also been reported acting strangely on Pine Island, though no bites have been reported. – See  http://www.fox4now.com/features/4inyourcorner/Rabies-warning-in-Lee-County-235605491.html

red-fox1Massachusetts 12/13/13 Franklin County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert for the Millers Falls section of Montague after a fox tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.recorder.com/home/9752554-95/montague-warns-of-rabies-in-area

120912_540169-tdy-120907-bayley-01.blocks_desktop_mediumNew Mexico 12/12/13 Eddy County: A skunk that fought with an unvaccinated pet dog on skunkDecember 9th on Russell Street in Carlsbad has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.krqe.com/news/local/rabies-case-results-in-euthanization?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+krqe-topstories+%28KRQE+News+13+-+Top+Stories%29

CAS_Kitten_Child_02North Carolina 12/12/13 Davidson County: Three people in the Denton community are being treated for potential exposure to rabies after being bitten by a kitten earlier this month. The kitten died and has tested positive for the virus. Officials issued a warning not to handle  a pet with bare hands after it has had contact with a wild animal.- See http://www.the-dispatch.com/article/20131212/News/312129984/-1/NEWS?Title=Rabid-kitten-bites-three-people-in-Denton-before-dying

image001skunkandcanineVirginia 12/14/13 Washington County: A skunk that fought with a vaccinated dog in the vicinity of Elliot Street in Abingdon on November 24th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.swvatoday.com/news/washington_county/article_06a2f95e-6357-11e3-8a76-0019bb30f31a.html

Young FOX prompts RABIES ALERT in CALIFORNIA ~ Other RABIES reports from CA, CT, NJx2, NC, WV, & CANADA: ONT ~ TEXAS county reports 14 cases of DENGUE FEVER confirmed ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from NYx2, & TX.

Gray fox kit. Photo by Calius. Wikimedia Commons.

Gray fox kit. Photo by Calius. Wikimedia Commons.

California 11/16/13 Yolo County: A young fox, or kit, that attacked two horses on Putah Creek Road in Winters near the Railroad Bridge on the Solano County side of the creek this past Friday has tested positive for rabies. According to a local trapper, this fox is old enough to have been on its own since July or August and it could be an isolated case, but the infection might have resulted from contact with an infected bat or other animal while hunting. A rabid bat was found in Woodland last week as well (see below). – See article at http://www.dailydemocrat.com/breakingnews/ci_24536934/yolo-animalservices-warning-about-rabid-fox-near-winters

Other Rabies reports:

LittleBrownBatCalifornia 11/13/13 Yolo County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert after a bat found Friday in the Woodland area near County Road 102 and Farmer Central Road tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.modbee.com/2013/11/13/3029041/yolo-officials-urge-caution-after.html

thumbnailCA0KC8HVConnecticut 11/15/13 Hartford County: A skunk believed to have been killed by a vaccinated dog and found dead on Welch Drive in Enfield on Thursday has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.courant.com/community/enfield/hc-enfield-rabies-1116-20131115,0,3267514.story

4541357140foxNew Jersey 11/13/13 Middlesex County: A fox found in a goat pen at Rutgers University in New Brunswick in the vicinity of College Farm Road and Route 1 has tested positive for rabies. This is the 14th animal in the county confirmed positive for rabies this year. – See http://www.mycentraljersey.com/article/20131113/NJNEWS/311130048/Fox-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-New-Brunswick

New Jersey 11/13/13 Middlesex County: A raccoon killed by a vaccinated pet dog in a resident’s yard in the vicinity of Oak and Maple avenues in Metuchen has tested positive for rabies. This is the 13th animal in the county confirmed positive for rabies this year. – See http://em.gmnews.com/news/2013-11-13/Front_Page/Third_rabid_animal_found_in_Metuchen_this_year.html

elkgrovecity.govNorth Carolina 11/14/13 Alamance County: A raccoon that was killed by an unvaccinated dog on Georgetown Drive in Elon has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.digtriad.com/news/local/article/305873/57/Dog-Fights-Kills-Rabid-Racoon-Placed-In-Quarantine

West Virginia 11/12/13 Marion County: A raccoon found at the northern end of the county has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wboy.com/story/23948210/animal-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-marion-county

Canada:

deptNatRes.DelawareOntario 11/14/13 Middlesex-London Health Unit: A Rabies Alert has been issued for London area residents after a bat tested positive for the virus recently. – See http://www.londoncommunitynews.com/news-story/4207502-bat-tests-positive-for-rabies-health-unit/

Dengue Fever:

imagesTexas 11/15/13 Rio Grande Valley: Health officials in Cameron County have confirmed 14 cases of dengue fever, a mosquito-borne viral disease. Neighboring Hidalgo County has identified three additional probable cases, but none of these have been confirmed. It is most serious in the very young, and very old, especially if they have diabetes or asthma. Symptoms may range from minor to life-threatening. There is neither a vaccine nor any treatment for dengue and physicians can only treat symptoms. For more information see http://www.cdc.gov/Dengue/ . – Also see video and article at http://www.valleycentral.com/news/story.aspx?id=972217#.UogVCuIljM0

West Nile Virus (WNV):

nassau cty NYNew York 11/15/13 Nassau County: A 7th human case of WNV was confirmed Thursday. A female resident of Hampstead tested positive for the virus. – See http://plainview.patch.com/groups/politics-and-elections/p/7th-west-nile-case-confirmed-in-nassau-plainview

suffolk cty NY (2)New York 11/12/13 Suffolk County: A 3rd human case of WNV was confirmed Tuesday, bringing the total on Long Island to 9 so far this year. The 50+ year-old female resident of Huntington is now recovering. – See http://www.newsday.com/news/health/3rd-west-nile-human-case-confirmed-in-suffolk-1.6424996

TH-LEGACY-IMAGE-ID-355-vaccinationTexas 11/15/13 kdhnews.com: State officials have confirmed that two horses in Coryell County and one each in Bell and Lampasas counties have tested positive for equine WNV. These four are among 10 confirmed by the Texas Department of State Health Services. Two of the 10 cases were fatal. – See http://kdhnews.com/news/official-three-area-horses-test-positive-for-west-nile-virus/article_a53e2f50-4d74-11e3-9adf-0019bb30f31a.html

Scientists find evidence of DENGUE VIRUS transmission in HOUSTON ~ New research video shows how TICKS penetrate their victims and hang on ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from ID, & LA ~ RABIES reports from CA, CO, MD, MA, PA, TX, & VA.

Bing free use license.

Bing free use license.

Texas 10/26/13 yourhoustonnews.com: In a retrospective study of three years of blood and cerebrospinal fluid samples submitted for West Nile virus testing in the Houston area, researchers at the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine found that 47 of the samples were positive for dengue virus. Their report appears today in the journal Vector-Borne and dengue_alertZoonotic Diseases. “We looked at clinical specimens that were banked at the city laboratory to see if there were potentially any other viruses that we could detect that weren’t known to be circulating in Houston but have the high potential to do so,” said Dr. Kristy Murray, associate professor and associate vice chair of research in the department of pediatrics at BCM and director of the Laboratory of Viral and Zoonotic Diseases at Texas Children’s Hospital. “We started with dengue virus since it was highest on the list of possible transmission here in Houston because we have the right kind of mosquitoes and a very large, densely populated city full of frequent travel to endemic areas, including Mexico and Central and South America.”

Asian tiger mosquito.

Asian tiger mosquito.

Dengue virus is spread through mosquitoes, similar to the way in which West Nile virus is transmitted. However, it is spread by a different mosquito, mostly the Asian tiger mosquito, which is rampant in the city. These are the mosquitoes that are out during the middle of the day as opposed to those mosquitoes that carry West Nile virus, which are out predominantly between dusk and dawn. People with dengue virus develop fever, severe headaches, joint pain, bone pain, pain behind the eyes and often a rash. The virus is usually a self-limiting illness. Patients have a febrile illness and flu-like symptoms for several days. However, infants between 5 and 8 months of age are at a high risk for severe disease, as are those who have been exposed to dengue virus previously. People who have had dengue once and are exposed to a different type of dengue virus have a high risk of developing hemorrhagic fever, an incredibly severe form of the disease. – For complete article see http://www.yourhoustonnews.com/spring/living/researchers-find-evidence-of-local-transmission-of-dengue-virus-in/article_630cd2e2-3e9e-11e3-a351-001a4bcf887a.html

Ticks:

European wood tick.

European wood tick.

Global 10/29/13 nytimes.com: by James Gorman – Chain saws, hockey masks and the undead are all classic symbols of horror. But for a true shiver of dread, take a look at a tick. When seen with an electron microscope, a tick’s mouth has what look like twin saws (chelicerae) flanking an appendage (a hypostome) that appears to be the kind of long, barbed sword that a villain in a video game might favor. And a short video is even scarier — particularly as the creature’s ability to bore down and settle in may well afflict anyone who spends time outdoors. Such a video, published Tuesday with a research paper in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, was made to help scientists understand how the tiny ticks that carry Lyme disease bacteria cut into the skin and then manage to hang on for the days it takes for them to fill up on blood.

Rostrum. Mouthpiece of Ixodes ricinus.

Rostrum. Mouthpiece of Ixodes ricinus.

American and German scientists placed European wood ticks (Ixodes ricinus) on the ears of hairless mice that were first sacrificed for the experiment. The wood tick is a close cousin of the deer tick (Ixodes scapularis) familiar to Americans, and similar in size. The immature tick, or nymph, in the video is about the size of a poppy seed. An adult is more like a sesame seed. The tick wanders a bit, picks its spot and goes to work. As it cuts, it looks as if it is doing the breast stroke with its pair of minuscule mouth saws. That movement cuts and pulls back the skin, plunging the hypostome deeper with each stroke, barb by gruesome barb, which, of course, makes them difficult to extract. The tick’s natural ratchet system is a marvel of efficiency, and it does not horrify everyone. “I find them beautiful,” said Dania Richter, a tick and Lyme disease specialist at the Charité University Hospital in Berlin and the primary author of the research report. – For complete report and video referred to in article see http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/30/science/earth/how-does-a-tick-do-its-dirty-work-research-video-offers-a-clue.html?emc=edit_tnt_20131029&tntemail0=y

West Nile Virus (WNV):

Gem cty IDIdaho 10/29/13 Gem County: Officials have confirmed that a male resident of Montour is the first WNV-related fatality in the state this year. – See http://www.messenger-index.com/news/montour-man-dies-of-west-nile/article_21844862-40cb-11e3-acb3-0019bb2963f4.html

LA-DHHLouisiana 10/25/13 LA Dept of Health: Officials have confirmed the state’s fourth WNV-related death this year in Ouachita Parish. There have also been four new WNV human cases this week, bringing this year’s total to 55 cases. This week’s new infections include two cases of neuro-invasive disease, one each in Acadia and Rapides parishes, and two cases of West Nile fever, with one each in Bossier and Caddo parishes. – See http://www.dhh.louisiana.gov/index.cfm/newsroom/detail/2902

Rabies:

grounded%20batCalifornia 10/24/13 Alameda County: A bat found in the vicinity of the 1500 block of Spruce Street in Berkeley has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.berkeleydailyplanet.com/issue/2013-10-26/article/41571?headline=Infected-Bat-a-Reminder-to-Use-Caution–By-Berkeley-Heath-Department

3243453-detail-of-girl-hugging-kitten-hand-and-paw-in-similar-positionColorado 10/25/13 El Paso County: A 3-week-old kitten in Fountain has tested positive for rabies. The kitten was found abandoned under a shed on South Race Street. – See http://www.elpasocountyhealth.org/news/news-releases

0coonvsdog422 - CopyMaryland 10/28/13 Worcester County: A dog from the Snow Hill area contracted rabies after fighting with an infected raccoon and the dog has been euthanized. Several members of the family that owned the dog were also potentially exposed to the virus and are being treated. – Set http://www.delmarvanow.com/article/20131028/NEWS/310280024/Rabies-confirmed-Snow-Hill-family-pet

bildeMassachusetts 10/25/13 capecodonline.com: by Patrick Cassidy – Officials from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services and the Cape Cod Rabies Task Force are scheduled to kick off this season’s distribution of oral rabies vaccine bait Monday. About 30,000 baits will be distributed from Sandwich and Mashpee through Route 124 in Brewster and Harwich in an effort to stop the spread of rabies in raccoons. The program will run through November 26th. – See http://www.capecodonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20131025/NEWS11/131029789

imagesCAMMOSTLPennsylvania 10/25/13 York County: A litter of feral kittens found in the 300 block of East Philadelphia Street in the City of York has been euthanized after being diagnosed with rabies. Stray cats, kittens, and wild animals in the vicinity should be avoided . – See http://www.yorkdispatch.com/breaking/ci_24387088/rabid-kittens-found-york-city

a.878998Texas 10/25/13 Coryell County: A skunk found near a home on West Washington Street in Copperas Cove on October 16th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://kdhnews.com/news/briefs/rabid-skunk-found-in-copperas-cove/article_d94e23da-3d2b-11e3-b3e2-001a4bcf6878.html

10254Virginia 10/28/13 Henrico County: A raccoon that was in contact with a vaccinated dog has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/raccoon-in-henrico-tests-positive-for-rabies-dog-exposed-to-disease-to-be-quarantined/2013/10/28/cd343cfa-3fed-11e3-b028-de922d7a3f47_story.html

MALARIA a threat to PENGUIN populations in zoos ~ Scientists report DENGUE FEVER being transmitted in HOUSTON ~ EEE& WNV reports from FL, KS, NH, & TXx2 ~ RABIES reports from MD, MI, & VA.

Humboldt penguin. Photo by Dori. Wikimedia Commons.

Humboldt penguin. Photo by Dori. Wikimedia Commons.

Global 10/06/13 nytimes.com: by Donald G. McNeil Jr. – Zoos all around the world love penguins. They’re cute, they don’t require much space, they never eat zookeepers. And children adore watching them, especially at feeding time. But as carefree as they might look, torpedoing through the water or rocketing into the air like a Poseidon missile, zoo penguins are stalked by an unrelenting killer: malaria. “It’s probably the top cause of mortality for penguins exposed outdoors,” said Dr. Allison N. Wack, a veterinarian at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore, which is building a new exhibit that will double its flock to a hundred birds. If left untreated, the disease would probably kill at least half the birds it infected, though outbreaks vary widely in intensity.

King penguin. Photo by Mark Dickson. Wikimedia Commons.

King penguin. Photo by Mark Dickson. Wikimedia Commons.

The avian version is not a threat to humans because mosquitoes carrying malaria and the parasites are species-specific; mosquitoes that bite birds or reptiles tend not to bite mammals, said Dr. Paul P. Calle, chief veterinarian for the Wildlife Conservation Society, which runs New York City’s zoos. And avian malaria is caused by strains of the Plasmodium parasite that do not infect humans. But for penguins in captivity, the threat is so great that many zoos dose their birds in summer with pills for malaria, said Dr. Richard Feachem, director of global health at the University of California, San Francisco.

Emperor penguin. Photo by Samuel Blanc. Wikimedia Commons.

 

Emperor penguin. Photo by Samuel Blanc. www.sblanc.com

Last year, six Humboldt penguins in the London Zoo died of malaria. London is also where the first case of penguin malaria was diagnosed almost a century ago; it was found in a King penguin in 1926. Since then, there have been many outbreaks of avian malaria, including at zoos in Baltimore, South Korea, Vienna and Washington, D.C. The last major American one was at the Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines during the hot, wet summer of 1986. From May to September of that year, 38 of the 46 Magellanic penguins the zoo had just imported from Chile succumbed. – For complete article see http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/08/science/earth/zoos-aim-to-ward-off-a-penguin-killer.html?emc=edit_tnt_20131006&tntemail0=y

Dengue Fever:

dengue_alert548Texas 10/09/13 chron.com: by Todd Ackerman – Dengue fever, a virulent tropical disease thought to be eradicated from the United States in the 1950s, has re-emerged in Houston, according to a new study. Baylor College of Medicine scientists are reporting the mosquito-borne virus has recently been transmitted in Houston, the first evidence the disease so prevalent in the developing world has spread to a major U.S. city in large numbers. In the past decade, it has been identified in Hawaii, south Florida and along the Texas-Mexico border. “Dengue virus can cause incredibly severe disease and death,” said Dr. Kristy Murray, a professor of tropical medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and the study’s principal investigator. “This study shows that Houston may be at risk of an outbreak, that people need to be on the lookout.”

baylorMurray’s team investigated the possibility that dengue might be in Houston because the area has the type of mosquitoes known to carry the virus and a dense population full of frequent travelers south of the border, where the virus is endemic. But the study, published Wednesday in the journal Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases, found that most of the infections were transmitted in Houston. There is no vaccine or treatment for the virus. A pandemic outside the United States – hot spots are in India and Bangladesh, Indonesia, Brazil and Mexico – dengue infects more than 100 million people a year, killing at least 25,000. Identified in nine tropical countries before 1970, it has spread to more than 100 today. – For complete article and precautions see http://www.chron.com/news/health/article/Dengue-virus-identified-in-Houston-4883103.php

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) & West Nile Virus (WNV):

Jackson_County_FLFlorida 10/09/13 Jackson County: Officials have confirmed that a deer found off Firebird Lane, south of Marianna, has tested positive for EEE. A resident notified authorities after his dog was exposed to a deer that was behaving abnormally. – See http://www.wmbb.com/story/23650822/deer-tests-positive-for-eee-in-jackson-county

KansasDeptHealthKansas 10/09/13 KS Dept of Health: Officials have confirmed 12 additional human cases of WNV in the past week bringing the total number of human cases so far this year to 32, including two fatalities. As of Oct. 7, the case count by county in Kansas is: Sedgwick-7, Barton-6, Johnson-3, Sherman-2, Wyandotte-2, Atchison-1, Butler-1, Chautauqua-1, Decatur-1, Ellis-1, Logan-1, Marshall-1, Republic-1, Rice-1, Rush-1, and Saline-1. – See http://www.kdheks.gov/news/web_archives/2013/10092013.htm

nh-medicaidNew Hampshire 10/09/13 NH Dept of Health: Officials today confirmed that a horse stabled in the Belknap County town of Belmont has tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/media/pr/2013/10-oct/10092013horse.htm

tarrant cty TXTexas 10/09/13 Tarrant County: Officials have confirmed a second county resident has died after contracting WNV. The victim was a male from Arlington in his 70s. The other fatality was a male resident of South Fort Worth in his 30s. So far this year five human cases of WNV have been identified in the county, including the two fatalities. – See http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/health/Arlington-Man-Dies-After-Contracting-West-Nile-Virus-227078781.html

dallascountysealTexas 10/08/13 Dallas County Dept of Health: Officials have confirmed the ninth human case of WNV in the county so far this year. The resident lives in ZIP code 75149 and is diagnosed with West Nile Neuro-invasive Disease. See http://www.dallascounty.org/department/hhs/press/documents/PressRelease_NinthPositiveHumanCase10082013.pdf

Rabies:

Bing.free.use.license.d88808sjpgMaryland 10/09/13 Anne Arundel County: A raccoon found Monday at the Fort Smallwood Park gate house has tested positive for rabies. The park is in Pasadena and officials are advising anyone who may have had contact with the raccoon to seek immediate medical advice. – See http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/anne-arundel/pasadena/bs-md-ar-rabid-racoon-20131009,0,1700238.story

Bat%20SketchMichigan 10/08/13 Tuscola County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert after a bat found in the county tested positive for the virus. – See video and article at http://www.wnem.com/story/23642583/bat-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-local-community

1248930287_t4KVf-L-1Virginia 10/08/13 Accomack County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert after a raccoon found roaming Cropper and Church streets in Chincoteague tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.delmarvanow.com/article/20131008/ESN01/310080073/CHINCOTEAGUE-Officials-concerned-after-third-case-rabies-year-found-island

CANADIAN spears MOUNTAIN LION to save partner ~ More DENGUE cases found in FLORIDA ~ Two WEST VIRGINIA children contract LA CROSSE ENCEPHALITIS ~ EEE & WNV reports from CT, DE, IL, MO, & OK ~ RABIES reports from MT, NJ, OK, & RI.

Image: Bing free use license.

Image: Bing free use license.

Canada:

British Columbia 09/10/13 independent.co.uk: by Memphis Barker – A British Columbia man who fought off a cougar attack on his partner armed only with a spear has been hailed as a hero. The man responded to the screams of his partner, who had been gardening outside her home on Flores Island, by running to her defence, and stabbing the wild cat several times with a spear. The victim, aged 60, has undergone surgery and is expected to recover from the terrifying ordeal. A conservation officer marvelled at the bravery of the cougar-killer, telling The Canadian Press: “It takes a lot of bravery to do what he did and I’m glad he was there to rescue her.” “You know it could have turned out a lot differently if he hadn’t been around”, he added.

VancouverIslandBCA team of conservation officers and a mountain lion hunter landed yesterday on Flores Island, off the coast of Vancouver Island, in order to track the would-be man-eater. They found it dead just 20 metres from the attack site, apparently killed by the stab wounds inflicted in the struggle. Conservation officers had previously attempted to track the cougar, after the same woman who it put in hospital on Sunday warned of an unusual encounter – but bad weather prevented hounds from taking the scent. Cougar attacks are on the rise in North America, with over half of the 100 documented attacks since 1890 taking place in the last 25 years. The majority of these attacks have taken place on Vancouver Island, near the couple’s home, as prey populations have gone into steep decline. – See original article at http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/british-columbia-man-saves-partner-from-cougar-attack–armed-only-with-a-spear-8806510.html
Dengue Fever:

dengue_alertFlorida 09/18/13 Martin County: Health officials have confirmed there are two new cases of dengue fever bringing the total to 20. All were exposed in the Rio, Jensen Beach area. The victims are from Martin County (13), St. Lucie County (4), Palm Beach County (1), and out of state residents (2). – See http://www.wptv.com/dpp/news/state/dengue-fever-update-20-confirmed-cases-acquired-in-the-rio-and-jensen-beach-area

La Crosse Encephalitis (LACV):

55544319-13203643-400225West Virginia 09/18/13 Kanawha-Charleston Health Dept.: Two human cases of mosquito-borne LACV have been confirmed in children younger than 15 years-of-age living in Kanawha County. Both children were hospitalized. – See http://www.kchdwv.org/News/Cases-of-La-Crosse-Encephalitis-Investigated.aspx

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) & West Nile Virus (WNV):

CT.DPH-Connecticut 09/20/13 CT Dept of Public Health: WNV – Since June 27, officials have identified WNV-positive mosquitoes at trap sites in 21 towns: Branford, Bridgeport, Darien, East Haven, Fairfield, Glastonbury, Greenwich, Groton, Manchester, New Haven, Norwalk, Plainfield, Stafford, Stamford, Stratford, Voluntown, Wallingford, Waterford, West Haven, Westport and Wilton. Two Connecticut residents have been diagnosed with WNV-associated illnesses including a Stratford resident, 60-69 years with onset of illness during the last week of July, and a Stamford resident, 80-89 years with onset during the third week of August. Both are recovering. EEEMosquitoes with EEE virus have been identified in 4 towns: Haddam, Hampton, Plainfield and Voluntown. A horse stabled in Griswold died from EEE-associated illness during the second week of September. No human EEE infections have been identified. – See http://www.ct.gov/dph/cwp/view.asp?a=4386&q=532160

Sussex cty DEDelaware 09/19/13 Sussex County: Agriculture officials have confirmed a horse stabled in the county that tested positive for EEE has been euthanized. – See http://www.wdel.com/story.php?id=53704

Cook cty ILIllinois 09/17/13 Cook County: A 67-year-old man from Cicero is the first WNV-related fatality in the Chicago area this year. – See http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-09-17/news/chi-west-nile-virus-cicero-death20130917_1_west-nile-virus-first-human-case-cicero-man

Ste._Genevieve_County.MOMissouri 09/18/13 Ste. Genevieve County: Health officials have confirmed a human case of WNV in a county resident. – See http://www.stegenherald.com/articles/2013/09/18/news/doc523a0c1446106924615522.txt

Tulsa_County.OKOklahoma 09/19/13 Tulsa County: Health officials have confirmed two human cases of WNV in the county. Statewide as of September 18th, there have been 22 human cases of WNV in the state, including one fatality in Oklahoma County. – See http://www.newson6.com/story/23476079/two-cases-of-west-nile-virus-confirmed-in-tulsa-county

Rabies:

Montana 09/18/13 Lewis & Clark County: Two bats that came in contact with pet cats and dogs in Helena have tested positive for rabies. One was found on Harbor Lane, and the other in East Helena. – See 320x240http://www.kpax.com/news/two-bats-found-near-helena-test-positive-for-rabies/

New Jersey 09/19/13 Camden County: A bat killed in a Berlin Township residence on September 14th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://sj.sunne.ws/2013/09/19/43547/

Oklahoma 09/19/13 Marshall County: A sick dog brought to an animal clinic in Madill has tested positive for rabies. Some people had already been in contact with the unvaccinated dog’s saliva and are being treated for potential Vaccinate%20Your%20Pets%20WEBexposure. – See http://www.madillrecord.net/71403/1828/headline-news

Rhode Island 09/18/13 Providence County: Police in North Smithfield are warning residents to stay away from a stray orange cat because it may have rabies. The cat, which is a male, long-haired tabby weighing about 12 pounds, recently sustained and unknown injury and was quarantined in Massachusetts, but while the owner was visiting in N. Smithfield, the cat escaped and is currently loose in the vicinity of the Route 146 exchange on Greenville Road. – See http://www.abc6.com/story/23466719/north-smithfield-police-warn-of-possible-rabid-cat

BLACK BEAR attacks COLORADAN walking DOGS ~ FLORIDA confirms DENGUE FEVER cases now up to 15 ~ EEE & WNV reports from The HORSE, CT, & RI ~ RABIES reports from AL, IL, OH, & TXx2.

Black Bear. Photo courtesy of U.S. Department of the Interior.

Black Bear. Photo courtesy of U.S. Department of the Interior.

Colorado 09/05/13 9news.com: by Kerry Leary – A man was attacked by a bear Wednesday evening while walking his dogs in a Larkspur neighborhood. The Colorado Division of Wildlife says the man was walking his dogs when he suddenly saw a bear running at him from the side. The bear bit him in one arm and then the man began to fight back. He injured the other arm when defending himself. After the man began to defend himself, the bear ran away. “Generally, black bears in Colorado are not aggressive, so this is kind of a strange case,” Jennifer Churchill with the Colorado Division of Wildlife said. “We certainly think it’s a cause for concern because in general, bears don’t like to come near people with dogs.” The man was transported to a local hospital. He was admitted, treated and released last night. The dogs were not injured. The Colorado Division of Wildlife says the bear in the area is considered to be aggressive because the attack was unprovoked…. The bear has not been spotted since Wednesday night’s incident. However, there are traps set up for the bear. – See http://www.9news.com/news/article/353808/188/Man-attacked-by-bear-while-walking-dogs

Dengue Fever:

DENGUE ALERTFlorida 09/05/13 wptv.com: The Florida Department of Health has confirmed four additional cases of dengue fever on the Treasure Coast. There were eleven previous cases confirmed in the Rio and Jensen Beach areas. The health department says of the fifteen cases, nine are Martin County residents, two are out-of-state visitors to Martin County and four are St. Lucie residents.- See http://www.wptv.com/dpp/news/region_martin_county/dengue-fever-four-more-cases-reported-on-the-treasure-coast#ixzz2e9GNzfPf

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) & West Nile Virus (WNV):

TH-LEGACY-IMAGE-ID-355-vaccinationNational 09/06/13 thehorse.com: by Erica Larson – As autumn approaches, some owners are ready to start thinking about phoning their veterinarians to set up their horses’ fall vaccinations. And because the number of West Nile virus (WNV) cases confirmed in U.S. horses continues to rise slowly, consider requesting a WNV booster. According to preliminary data released Sept. 5 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Animal Health Monitoring and Surveillance, 64 cases of WNV have been confirmed in 23 states thus far in 2013.- For complete article with recently confirmed cases see http://www.thehorse.com/articles/32507/west-nile-virus-reported-in-horses-nationwide

CT.DPH-Connecticut 09/06/13 CT Dept of Public Health: Since June 27, WNV-positive mosquitoes have been found in 20 towns: Branford, Bridgeport, Darien, East Haven, Fairfield, Glastonbury, Greenwich, Groton, Manchester, New Haven, Norwalk, Plainfield, Stafford, Stamford, Stratford, Voluntown, Wallingford, Wallingford, Waterford and Westport. Two residents have been diagnosed with WNV-associated illnesses including a Stratford resident, 60-69 years with onset of illness during the last week of July, and a Stamford resident, 80-89 years with onset during the third week of August. Both are recovering. Mosquitoes with EEE virus have been identified in Hampton, Plainfield and Voluntown. – See http://www.ct.gov/dph/cwp/view.asp?a=4386&q=531350

RI-doh-logoRhode Island 09/04/13 RI Dept of Health: Officials have announced that test results from two mosquito pools from a trap set in the Great Swamp in West Kingston have been confirmed positive for both EEE and WNV. – See http://www.ri.gov/press/view/20220

Rabies:

Racoon15642 Alabama 09/04/13 Lee County: A raccoon seen in the 1300 block of 2nd Avenue in Opelika acting “very strangely” has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.oanow.com/news/opelika/article_75f979d6-15af-11e3-a63d-001a4bcf6878.html

Illinois 09/04/13 Will County: A live bat found on the floor of a bedroom closet in a Mokena home has tested positive for rabies. – See http://southtownstar.suntimes.com/22357700-522/rabid-bat-in-mokena-is-will-countys-fourth-case-this-year.html

de173b3b87692a16ecab988fdda972e0Ohio 09/05/13 Mahoning County: A bat found in the vicinity of James Street in Poland Township has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.vindy.com/news/2013/sep/05/fifth-rabid-animal-found-in-mahoning-cou/?nw

Texas 09/05/13 Dallas County: A Rabies Alert was issued by the City of Garland after a bat that was captured on Sunday near a home in the 1100 block of Mayfield Avenue tested positive for the virus. – See http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2013/09/05/rabies-found-in-bat-near-garland-home/

800px-Striped_Skunk-300x180 - CopyTexas 09/05/13 Fort Bend and Waller counties: by Greg Densmore – Continuing a program that was launched last year, the Fort Bend County Health and Human Services Department has planned another helicopter drop of rabies vaccine packets this month in undeveloped areas of Fort Bend County. The program also targets a small part of Waller County. Scheduled for Sept. 16-20, the drop of about 100,000 doses of the oral vaccine is designed to control rabies in skunks, according to Melanie Manville, public health spokeswoman for Fort Bend County. Last year, county crews put out about 38,000 oral vaccine packets, also for skunks. – See http://katytimes.com/news/article_daa20248-158e-11e3-9fb4-001a4bcf887a.html

Four MASSACHUSETTS island residents diagnosed with TULAREMIA ~ WEST NILE VIRUS (WNV) reports from LA, & NJ ~ RABIES ORAL VACCINE BAIT reports from the U.S. Dept of Agriculture.

Eastern Cottontail is the most common rabbit found on Nantucket Island. Photo courtesy U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Eastern Cottontail is the most common rabbit found on Nantucket Island. Photo courtesy U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Massachusetts 09/03/13 ack.net: by Jason Graziadei – Four island residents have been diagnosed with the infectious disease tularemia, commonly known as rabbit fever, according to the Nantucket Health Department. Town officials are urging island residents to avoid touching dead rabbits or other small animals, or approaching any animal that appears to be disoriented or sluggish. The Health Department is also advising landscapers to wear respirator masks when cutting grass over six inches tall to reduce the risk of exposure in the event a hidden animal is struck and the bacteria becomes aerosolized. Tularemia, caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis, can be transmitted to humans who handle sick or deceased animals or are bitten by infected ticks or deer flies, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It can also be transmitted by inhaling contaminated dusts or aerosols.

CapeCodTownsThe disease, which can cause fever, skin ulcers, pneumonia, and is potentially life-threatening in rare cases, is most often treated and controlled successfully with antibiotics. “We need the public to be aware,” Nantucket Health Department director Richard Ray said. “If there’s a dead animal near the side of the road, ignore it, do not let your animal go near it, and call the DPW to remove it. Please be careful about where your lawnmower goes and what it runs over. We’ve had a few cases over the years, but not four at one time.”  – See: http://www.ack.net/Tularemiadiagnosedinfourislandresidents090313.htm#sthash.qSvgYTzP.dpuf

West Nile Virus (WNV):

LA-DHHLouisiana 08/30/13 LA Dept of Health: Officials are reporting eight new human cases of WNV this week, bringing this year’s total number of human cases to 21. This week’s new infections include four cases of West Nile neuro-invasive disease, one each from Caldwell, Lafayette, Ouachita and Rapides parishes and four cases of West Nile fever, with two cases from Lafayette parish and one each from Calcasieu and Ouachita. – See http://www.dhh.louisiana.gov/index.cfm/newsroom/detail/2859

NJDOH-LogoNew Jersey 09/03/13 NJ Dept of Health: Officials have announced that two residents have died of complications related to WNV. A 78-year-old Gloucester County woman developed fever, blurred vision, weakness and diarrhea in mid-August, was hospitalized and died on August 24. The death was reported to the state Health Department today. A 92-year-old man from Morris County developed fever and muscle weakness in mid-August, was admitted to the hospital with encephalitis (swelling of the brain) and died on August 31. Six New Jersey residents have tested positive for WNV: One each in Bergen, Burlington, Gloucester and Morris counties and two in Camden County. All counties except Cumberland and Salem have detected WNV activity in mosquitoes. – See http://www.state.nj.us/health/news/2013/approved/20130903b.html

Rabies:

Photo courtesy U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Photo courtesy U.S. Department of Agriculture.

NH, NY, OH, VT, WV 09/03/13 US Dept of Agriculture: The U.S. Department of Agriculture is tossing marshmallow-flavored plastic packets of rabies vaccine out of airplanes in northern New York and parts of Vermont, New Hampshire, Ohio, and West Virginia. The work is part of a third U.S. field trial of a vaccine to control rabies in raccoons, skunks and other wildlife. Biologists are evaluating the safety and immune effects of the vaccine. So far, they’ve found it effective in raccoons, coyotes and foxes, but it hasn’t proven effective in combating rabies in skunks. The plastic blister packs are being distributed this month by airplane drop and by people on the ground. The olive green rectangular packets are a little bigger than a quarter. The USDA says pets won’t be harmed if they find and eat a vaccine packet.

usda.wildlife.servicesME, NH, NY, VT 09/02/13 US Dept of Agriculture: The Wildlife Services program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture is distributing an oral rabies vaccination bait to inoculate wildlife and help stop the further spread of rabies. The Plattsburgh project will cover parts of New York, Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont and distribute 372,900 baits by fixed-wing aircraft and 4,680 by hand. – See http://pressrepublican.com/0100_news/x335461355/Rabies-baits-being-dropped-in-area