South Dakota finds 33 cases of Chronic Wasting Disease since July 1, 2010; a Rabbit in Colorado tests positive for Tularemia; a West Nile Virus report from Connecticut; and Rabies reports from Colorado, Idaho, New York, and Texas. Announcement: Idaho seeks public input concerning hunting/trapping Wolves.

Bull Elk. Courtesy National Park Service.

South Dakota 07/13/11 aberdeennews.com: South Dakota wildlife officials say testing over the past year has found 33 positive cases of chronic wasting disease in the state. Game, Fish and Parks officials between last July 1 and this June 30 tested more than 1,700 free-ranging deer and elk for the fatal disease that attacks the central nervous system in members of the deer family. Eight elk and 25 mule and white-tailed deer tested positive. The previous year, seven elk and 21 deer tested positive. Since testing began in 1997, South Dakota has confirmed CWD cases in 52 elk and 121 deer. More than 23,000 animals have been tested.

Mountain Cottontail

Colorado 07/12/11 koaa.com: by Sharon Knight – The Pueblo Health Department says a rabbit has tested positive for tularemia in Pueblo West. The rabbit was found about a mile south of Highway 50 West, near the 2nd McCulloch exit. “Tularemia is similar to plague. It is typically found in animals, especially rabbits, and hares,” said Heather Maio, director of Environmental Health Division at the Pueblo City-County Health Department. “Tularemia can be passed to humans or animals through the bite of infected insects, most commonly ticks and deer flies, and by handling infected, sick, or dead animals,” said Maio. The health department offers these tips to avoid contracting tularemia. Avoid ticks, stay out of areas that wild rodents inhabit, keep your pets from hunting or eating wild rodents, never touch a sick or dead animal with your bare hands, avoid drinking water from streams or lakes, and see a doctor or veterinarian if you or your pet becomes ill with a high fever and/or a swollen lymph node.

Connecticut 07/13/11 ct.gov: Press Release – The State Mosquito Management Program today announced that mosquitoes trapped in Orange on June 29, 2011 have tested positive for West Nile virus (WNV). These results represent the first positive mosquitoes identified in Orange by the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station (CAES) this year.

Colorado 07/12/11coloradoconnection.com: by Jaryd Wilson – Pueblo Health Department officials announced Tuesday three bats and another skunk have tested positive for rabies in the city. The rabid skunk brings the total number of rabid skunks found in the city in 2011 to eight. The most recent was found near 22nd Lane and Daniel Road. These are the first three bats found with rabies this year. In El Paso County, there were also six skunks and a fox found with rabies.

Idaho 07/12/11 idahostatejournal.com: Southeastern District Health Department – Two bats from Southeast Idaho (1 in Bannock County and 1 in Franklin County) have tested positive for rabies in the last week, prompting public health officials to warn people to take precautions around bats and make sure that their dogs, cats, and horses are adequately vaccinated against rabies. These are the first cases of rabid bats in the State this summer.

New York 07/12/11 patch.com: by Sarah Studley – A skunk caught and tested for rabies Sunday has been confirmed rabid, the Westchester County Department of Health said in a statement today. A rabies alert has been issued to anyone who visited Rockefeller State Park and may have come into contact with a rabid skunk prior to July 10. “Anyone who believes that they or a pet may have had contact with this skunk should contact the Westchester County Department of Health immediately at (914) 813-5000 to assess the need for rabies treatment,” said Westchester County Acting Commissioner of Health, Dr. Cheryl Archbald.

Texas 07/12/11 myfoxdfw.com: A stray dog that tested positive for the rabies virus bit two people on July 6 near Rio Vista, according to the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office. Capt. Mike Gilbert said the animal is a black and white female and is a medium sized dog. It is also thought to be a pit bull mix. The bites happened in the 3400 block of County Road 1106, southwest of Rio Vista. The Zoonosis Control Program of the Texas Department of State Health Services and the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office advise anyone who may have come in contact with the animal to let their physician know immediately. This includes anyone who may have come in contact with the dog as far back as June 26 of this year. The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office said throughout the county, since December 2010, there have been confirmed reports of seven skunks, two horses, one cat, one raccoon and one dog with the rabies virus.

Announcement:

Wolf Season Proposals

Idaho Fish and Game seeks public comment on proposals for a wolf hunting season for the fall/winter of 2011-2012

In late July, the Idaho Fish and Game Commission will set wolf hunting and trapping seasons based on these proposals and public input.

  • The primary objective is to use hunting and trapping as a means to reduce the statewide wolf population to a level that is sustainable, meets federal recovery goals, and reduces conflicts statewide.
  • Specific proposals seek to maximize wolf harvest opportunities where wolf conflicts are the greatest.
  • Mandatory harvest reporting provides valuable information for ongoing monitoring and future season adjustments.

Input from the public is important, and we ask you to read this document and then answer a short questionnaire. In addition to the questionnaire, Fish and Game is also conducting a scientific survey of hunters and the general public selected at random. The results of both will be presented to the commissioners at their meeting before setting the wolf season.

To participate in the public survey go to

http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/hunt/wolf/proposals.cfm

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