OREGON DFW investigation confirms lone WOLF killed five SHEEP in Umatilla County ~ WASHINGTON Fish & Wildlife officer shoots MOUNTAIN LION in residential area ~ MASSACHUSETTS policeman says DOG was attacked by BEAR in Northampton ~ CALIFORNIA officials find CROW with WEST NILE VIRUS in Sacramento ~ Brandeis study finds PUERTO RICO spends about $38 million a year dealing with DENGUE FEVER ~ RABIES reports from CT, FL, NC, SC, TX, & VA.

Gray Wolf. Courtesy U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Oregon 05/03/12 oregon.gov: News Release – A May 2 investigation by ODFW confirmed that four penned sheep (two ewes, two lambs) were killed by a wolf on private land east of Weston, Ore. in northern Umatilla County. One additional lamb is missing and believed to have been killed by the wolf. The incident occurred in an area not known to be frequented by one of Oregon’s known wolf packs (Imnaha, Wenaha, Walla Walla, Snake River) but by two wolves discovered last August in the northern Mt Emily wildlife management unit. Based on evidence at the scene, wildlife biologists believe a single wolf was involved in the depredation. ODFW immediately helped the landowner install electrified fladry, a type of fencing that can deter wolves, around the sheep pens. ODFW is also working to capture and radio-collar the wolf.

This marks the first time ODFW has confirmed a wolf kill of livestock in Umatilla County. The county has an active Wolf Depredation Advisory Committee under the state’s new Oregon Wolf Depredation Compensation and Financial Assistance County Block Grant Program and the landowner is eligible to seek compensation for the loss. The five dead sheep bring the total number of livestock animals killed by wolves in Oregon to 57 since 2009. The last confirmed wolf kill of livestock occurred March 8, 2012.

Washington 05/03/12 bellinghamherald.com: by Kristi Pihl – The constant barking of his neighbor’s dogs early Wednesday alerted James Ford that something wasn’t right. What he saw in the Kennewick backyard on the 3200 block of West Third Place was a nearly 120-pound cougar high in a tree. About an hour later, a state Department of Fish and Wildlife officer shot and killed the young mountain lion after officials determined there was no other safe way to remove the wild animal from the dense residential area. The Kennewick Police Department received its first call about the big cat at 1 a.m. Wednesday. There were two other sightings within a half-mile of where it eventually was cornered about 9 a.m., said Sgt. Mike Jewell with the state Department of Fish and Wildlife. Ford said he already had gotten a heads up from his neighbor David Carlson, who spotted the cougar at 4:20 a.m. as he left for work at ConAgra Foods. At first, he thought it was a large dog. Carlson called the police, then notified Ford and other neighbors to be on the lookout. But it wasn’t until closer to 9 a.m. that Ford heard the dogs and saw the cougar about 25 feet up in a tree.

Massachusetts 05/03/12 gazettenet.com: by Rebecca Everett – A golden retriever that was attacked by a bear on Lawn Avenue Wednesday night was treated for puncture wounds but is expected to recover, police said. The 9-year-old dog was outside the home about 8:30 p.m. when a mother bear and two cubs came in the yard, said Lt. Michael Patenaude. The dog was apparently barking at one of the cubs when the bear attacked it, he said. The dog was taken to the vet and received stitches for three puncture wounds on its face and neck, he said. “We called the Environmental Police to investigate, but the bears had apparently left the scene before they got there,” Patenaude said. He said bear attacks on domestic animals are unusual. “But anytime you get a mother bear protecting her cubs, that can be dangerous,” he said.

California 05/03/12 kcra.com: A crow found in the Tahoe Park area of Sacramento tested positive for the West Nile virus, Sacramento County officials said Wednesday. The Sacramento-Yolo Mosquito and Vector Control District said it is the second bird of the 2012 season to test positive for the disease. “With the very warm temperatures we’ve seen recently, West Nile virus is starting to amplify in our region,” said David Brown, district manager. Brown added that the West Nile discovery is a reminder people need to protect themselves against mosquitoes and the diseases that are transmitted. In 2011, there were nine deaths and 158 human West Nile virus cases reported in California.

Puerto Rico 05/02/12 usnews.com: The costs of treating and coping with dengue fever in Puerto Rico total nearly $38 million a year, a new study finds. It also said that every $1 spent on surveillance and prevention of the mosquito-borne disease could save $5 in illness-related costs. Households pay nearly half the costs of the disease, followed by government (24 percent), insurance companies (22 percent) and employers (7 percent), according to researchers from Brandeis University’s Schneider Institutes for Health Policy in Waltham, Mass. The study appears in the May issue of the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. Given that the U.S. government covers 62 percent of Puerto Rico’s public health expenses, “sound investments related to dengue would benefit not only residents of Puerto Rico but all taxpayers throughout the United States,” the researchers said in a journal news release.

They focused on Puerto Rico because it’s an area within the United States with substantial numbers of dengue fever. In 2010, more than 22,000 cases of dengue fever were reported, which works out to an incidence rate of 57 cases per 10,000 people. Because treatment is readily available, deaths from dengue fever in Puerto Rico average about 16 per year. “People generally think of dengue as a disease of poor countries; the fact that we found it to be a major burden in a U.S. territory — and because it recently has cropped up on the U.S. mainland — is a reminder that mosquito-borne illnesses can present an equal opportunity threat,” study co-author Donald Shepard said in the news release. Dengue fever, which broke out in the Florida Keys in 2010, currently threatens nearly 3 billion people worldwide. Public health experts warn that the spread of dengue fever could prove more costly and cause more illness than malaria. Symptoms in dengue include high fever plus at least two of the following: severe headache, eye pain, joint pain, muscle or bone pain, rash, mild bleeding and low white blood cell count, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Worldwide, dengue fever infects 100 million to 200 million people each year and causes 20,000 deaths, according to the release. The study received funding from vaccine maker Sanofi Pasteur, which is developing a dengue vaccine, the release disclosed.

Connecticut 05/02/12 Simsbury, Hartford County: A skunk recovered near Notch Road after it was seen fighting with two dogs has tested positive for rabies. No description of the dogs was provided. – See http://simsbury.patch.com/articles/rabid-skunk-found-near-nod-road

Florida 05/02/12 Lakeland, Polk County: A raccoon killed by a dog in the 4800 block of Elam Road has tested positive for rabies. This is the fourth animal rabies case reported in the county so far this year. – See http://www2.tbo.com/news/breaking-news/2012/may/02/fourth-case-of-rabies-this-year-detected-in-polk-c-ar-399157/

North Carolina 05/02/12 Carolina Beach, New Hanover County: A raccoon that fought with a vaccinated dog last Sunday has tested positive for rabies. This is the sixth case of animal rabies in the county so far this year. – See http://yellowtape.blogs.starnewsonline.com/18646/fighting-raccoon-tested-positive-for-rabies/

South Carolina 05/02/12 Chesnee, Spartanburg County: A feral cat picked up in Chesnee has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www2.wspa.com/news/2012/may/02/6/rabies-confirmed-stray-cat-spartanburg-co-ar-3717853/

Texas 05/02/12 Tyler, Smith County: A bat found near the 15000 block of County Road 26 has tested positive for rabies. This is the second case of animal rabies in the county so far this year. – See http://www.ketknbc.com/news/rabid-bat-found-in-smith-county

Virginia 05/02/12 Powhatan County: A skunk found in the southeastern part of the county has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.10tv.com/content/stories/apexchange/2012/05/02/va–powhatan-rabies.html

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