Colorado city releases draft of new BLACK BEAR and MOUNTAIN LION management plan; Florida’s Duval County confirms second WEST NILE VIRUS death this year; New case of WEST NILE VIRUS in Mississippi’s Madison County brings state’s total to 24 this year; and Wisconsin HORSES felled by EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS. Canada: BC conservation officers shoot COUGAR family in residential area.

Mountain lion. Courtesy U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Colorado 09/11/11 by Mitchell Byars – The city of Boulder has released a draft wildlife management plan to address black bear and mountain lion sightings within the city. One emphasis of the plan is working with neighborhoods to monitor trash to avoid attracting bears. In 2010, trash was identified as an attractant in 39 instances, or about 30 percent of sightings. Under the management plan, city officials would check trash in areas where bears have been spotted to look for signs of bear activity. The city also will be encouraging residents to get more bear-resistant trash bins. Valerie Matheson, Boulder’s urban wildlife coordinator, said the patrols will help compile more data on bear activity, as opposed to relying on reported sightings. “This will help us see where they are and what containers they are knocking over,” she said. “Right now, our database is just based on reports, and I actually think bear sightings are probably under-reported. This will help us get more objective data.”

In addition to bears, the plan calls for more education on mountain lions. Matheson said that since attractants and prey for mountain lions are harder to control, the management plan seeks to educate people on how to react to mountain lion sightings. “With mountain lions, managing what brings them into Boulder is harder,” she said. “We felt like the best thing to do was to educate residents so they can co-exist with the lions.” The city hopes to start a website that will post information on bear and mountain lion sightings as well as information about what to do when they are encountered in the city. The plan also says that the methods departments use to share information with each other about sightings must be streamlined.

Florida 09/12/11 A second person who had contracted the West Nile virus in recent months has died, according to the Duval County Health Department. The Health Department also confirmed a 12th case of the virus has been reported this year. Health officials said a 57-year-old woman who was the sixth person to contract the virus this year died within the last week. They said a 43-year-old man with the virus is the latest case to be reported. Two cases involving a 53-year-old man and an 85-year-old man were reported last week. A 64-year-old woman with the virus died last month. About one in 150 people infected with West Nile virus will develop severe illness, health officials said. Dr. Bob Harmon, of the Duval County Health Department, said 80 percent of those people infected with the virus will experience no symptoms at all, while 20 percent will have symptoms. Harmon said one out of 150 people can develop a serious neurological disease.

Madison County

Mississippi 09/12/11 Five newly reported cases of West Nile virus bring the total in Mississippi this year to 24. On Monday, the state Health Department says a new case was found in Madison County. So far this year, cases have been confirmed in Forrest (3), Hinds (4), Jones (3), Madison (2), Pearl River (6), and one case each in: Coahoma, Rankin, Tallahatchie, Tate, Wayne, and Washington counties. Two deaths have been confirmed, in Jones and Pearl River counties. In 2010, Mississippi had eight West Nile virus cases and no deaths.

Wisconsin 09/08/11 by Sara Nemec – A health officer with Bayfield County confirmed Wednesday the county’s first equine death due to a deadly mosquito-borne virus, while an area vet confirmed Tuesday that an Ashland County horse also died last month from the same disease. In the first confirmed case of Eastern Equine Encephalitis in the area this year, veterinarian Heidi Jahnke, of the Ashland Area Veterinary Clinic, said the Ashland County mustang horse died Aug. 21 from the fatal neurological disease. In neighboring Bayfield County, a state lab indicated Friday another horse had succumbed to the same disease. Cases have also been confirmed in Dunn, Price and Taylor counties in August, though it is unknown if the disease resulted in animal mortalities in Price and Taylor counties. – For complete article go to


British Columbia 09/12/11 by Mike Hager – A mother cougar and her two offspring were shot and killed by conservation officers this weekend after they were spotted lounging in a backyard in Squamish, B.C. — the cougar capital of British Columbia. These are the first cats to be destroyed in the area this year, but two have been hit on Highway 99 and there have been 145 cougar sightings and complaints in the rugged town 65 kilometres north of Vancouver — the most of any community in the province. “The thing to realize about these cougars is we were dealing with about six weeks of complaints, and many of them related to human safety,” said Insp. Chris Doyle, a conservation officer for the Sea to Sky district. “The (three) cougars were approaching people and we had reports of them stalking. “There were many serious encounters with mountain bikers in the area. The cougars weren’t backing off and they started to come into people’s yards and up onto decks.” Doyle said the high number of complaints this year could be traced back to this particular family. – For complete article go to


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