British Columbia 11/13/11 winnipegfreepress.com: by Dene Moore – The chief of the Tsilhqot’in Nation says he is concerned about the toll the region’s abundant wolf population could have on wild horses and endangered caribou this winter. The B.C. government made a controversial decision earlier this year to lift hunting restrictions and keep the wolf hunt open in the Chilcotin region because of concerns about the number of cattle and wildlife falling prey. Critics say the open hunt is a reckless decision not based on science, but Tsilhqot’in Chief Joe Alphonse said even the hunt is not enough and the government should go further. He’d like to see the province contract trappers and put a bounty on wolves on the plateau west of the Fraser River in central B.C. “As First Nations people we have great respect for wolves but you have to keep things in balance,” Alphonse said in a recent interview. “Eventually things will balance out,” but in the meantime caribou, cattle and wild horses will pay the price, he said. This summer, the Ministry of Forests and Lands eliminated any bag limit and ordered the wolf hunt season to stay open indefinitely in the area – an approach already in place in several other areas of the province. Provincial officials are adamant it is not a cull and say the wolf population is at a historic high, and both ranchers and area First Nations support the open hunt. Alphonse said low prices for wolf pelts means an open hunt won’t be enough to entice hunters and trappers to reduce the numbers of the pack.- For complete article go to http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/arts-and-life/life/greenpage/wolf-hunt-will-stay-open-in-chilcotin-too-many-wolves-threaten-horses-caribou-133772253.html
Texas 11/12/11 Cleburne, Johnson County: Police Chief Terry Powell said last week the feral cat population at Hulen Park and Splash Station poses a risk of rabies and other health hazards to more than 120,000 people who visit the two locations annually. On Thursday, city officials began a program to remove an estimated 50 to 75 cats. “The cats will be humanely removed via live traps and transported to the animal shelter where they will be housed,” Powell said. “They will be treated as any other cat taken to the facility where they will be housed for a minimum of 72 hours. See http://www.cleburnetimesreview.com/local/x960870255/City-implements-plan-to-remove-feral-cats-from-park
Connecticut 11/11/11 East Windsor, Hartford County: A feral cat that bit a Warehouse Point resident on Nov 8 has tested positive for rabies. The cat was described as a light grey tiger. See http://windsorlocks.patch.com/articles/feral-cat-in-warehouse-point-tests-positive-for-rabies
Montana 11/12/11 Billings, Yellowstone County: Woman seeks help in locating the owner of a dog that bit her on Oct 27 to verify rabies vaccination record. See http://billingsgazette.com/news/opinion/mailbag/article_fbe2330c-6c2c-571d-a7c0-1997dd259516.html
Michigan 11/13/11 mlive.com: by Victor Skinner – State fisheries officials are tracking a new fish virus found in Michigan waters this year that has resulted in two carp die-offs. Officials recently confirmed a Koi herpes virus is responsible for the die-off of an estimated 2,000-4,000 adult common carp in Oceana County’s Silver Lake in August. The die-off is the second this year after a June outbreak in Kent Lake in Oakland and Washtenaw counties that killed several hundred carp. “It is not likely it has been here very long,” said Gary Whelan, fish production manager for the state Department of Natural Resources. “We don’t know how widespread it is across the state. Our best guess is it probably came from someone releasing ornamental fish into our waters.” Officials said the Koi herpes virus, also known as KHV, was first detected in Michigan in a private Koi pond near Grand Rapids in 2003, and officials removed those fish. In 2007 and 2008, the virus was responsible for large scale common carp die-offs in Ontario, Canada, Whelan said.
“We know it has been showing up in the Great Lakes region recently,” he said. KHV is thought to only affect common carp, goldfish and Koi (specifically Nishikigoi,which is Japanese meaning “brocaded carp”, an ornamental variety of carp), and there are no known human health effects. Outbreaks of the virus have been found around the world, Whelan said. It is an internationally reportable disease and is causing concerns among large scale production facilities in Japan and Germany that sell the fish for food or the aquarium trade, he said. Michigan reported the recent outbreaks to the World Animal Health Organization. DNR fisheries biologist Richard O’Neal said officials “didn’t see any significant die-off of any other species in (Silver Lake)” in August when thousands of carp began to wash ashore. – For complete article go to http://www.mlive.com/outdoors/index.ssf/2011/11/koi_virus_blamed_for_die-off_o.html
Arizona 11/12/11 Casa Grande, Pinal County: Rancher believes a mountain lion killed three of his emus on Nov 4, and a fourth emu is missing. Two sets of tracks that were found likely were those of a mother and cub. See http://www.trivalleycentral.com/articles/2011/11/12/casa_grande_dispatch/top_stories/doc4ebeb2a8262dc124164213.txt
Montana 11/11/11 Libby, Lincoln County: A mountain lion attacked and severely injured a colt that had to be euthanized. The attack occurred on Nov 8 but the lion has not been found. See http://www.thewesternnews.com/news/article_256713ca-0cab-11e1-a398-001cc4c03286.html
(See November 7, 2011: Canada: Open-water SALMON farms may be source of VIRUS thought to be reducing WILD SALMON numbers by millions.)
British Columbia 11/13/11 bendbulletin.com: by Phuong Le – Canadian government officials said last week they have found no signs of a potentially deadly, infectious salmon virus in British Columbia. Researchers with Simon Fraser University in British Columbia announced last month they had detected infectious salmon anemia, or ISA, in two wild juvenile Pacific salmon collected from the province’s central coast, prompting fears the influenza-like virus could wreck the salmon fishing industry in the Pacific Northwest. “There’s no evidence that (the virus) occurs in fish off the waters of British Columbia,” Dr. Cornelius Kiley, a veterinarian with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency said, announcing results from the government investigation.
Government tests of the original 48 samples collected from B.C. researchers at a national laboratory have turned up negative for the virus, Canadian officials said. Additional tests performed on other samples have also turned up negative because the quality of some of those samples was too degraded to be conclusive. The results are consistent with independent testing conducted by a lab in Norway, officials said. While that lab found one weak positive reading among multiple tests, it also noted the sample was poor and results could not be reproduced, said Peter Wright, national manager for the Research and Diagnostic Laboratory System with Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Officials are continuing to test samples for the salmon virus, which has affected Atlantic salmon fish farms in Chile, Maine, New Brunswick and other areas. It does not affect humans. Rick Routledge, a researcher with Simon Fraser University who announced the detection of the salmon virus in October, said one positive reading by an independent laboratory in Norway shouldn’t be dismissed entirely. “Given that he did get a positive reading once, from a degraded sample, I don’t feel comfortable with the notion that you could dismiss that out of hand,” he said. “I hope that further sampling and testing would continue.” – For complete article go to http://www.bendbulletin.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20111113/NEWS0107/111130358/1009/NEWS01&nav_category=NEWS01