Tag Archives: Murine typhus

Twenty treated for MURINE TYPHUS in TEXAS ~ COLORADO now confirms 15 human cases of TULAREMIA this year ~ Captive DEER in TEXAS found with CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE ~ RABIES reports from CAx2 & SC.

typhus-120922085821-phpapp02-thumbnail-4

Texas 07/01/15 khou.com: by Lauren Talarico – A disease rarely seen since the 1940s has turned up again in the Galveston area. Murine typhus is spread by fleas on rats and opossums to people. At least 20 people have been treated for the disease at (University of Texas Medical Branch) UTMB. Infectious disease expert Dr. Lucas Blanton first noticed its comeback in 2012 when a patient displayed a fever and rash. “It looked and smelled like it could be murine typhus. Then months later, we diagnosed another one,” Dr. Blanton said. “So when you have one case, it is interesting. When you have two cases, well that gets even more interesting,” Dr. Blanton has worked with Galveston’s animal control officers to take blood and flea samples from opossums. Two out of three tested positive for murine typhus. The disease had been close to eradication since the 1950s thanks to a pesticide called DDT. It’s widely used to kill fleas on rats. “I don’t think there’s any cause for mass hysteria,” said Dr. Blanton. “We love our pets. We should keep our pets, but perhaps flea control.” Murine typhus mimics the flu. Although it’s rarely deadly, without antibiotics the disease takes its time to clear up and leaves patients miserable. – See http://www.khou.com/story/news/health/2015/07/01/rare-disease-linked-to-fleas-returns-to-galveston/29589859/

TULAREMIA (RABBIT FEVER):

80ab05b3670e2bdcb7165060f8167dfd (2)Colorado 07/07/15 ifreepress.com: So far this year, 15 people have been infected with tularemia, or rabbit fever in Colorado. The microorganism is often carried by wild animals, especially hares, rabbits and rodents. Fed by unusually lush vegetation, rabbits have been breeding like rabbits about Colorado, escalating the risk for what is typically a uncommon bacterial illness in the state. It is then transmitted to humans through insect bites from ticks and deerflies. Doctors in Colorado are being told to keep tularemia in mind with patients who have fever, chills, and headaches. As per a data, rabbit fever can be found across the nation and on yearly basis, around 135 cases are reported and majority of them are reported in the south central United States. – For complete article see http://www.ifreepress.com/health/5024-15-cases-of-rabbit-fever-in-colorado-west-texas-news

CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE (CWD):

HEADERTexas 07/02/15 dailyjournal.net: A Texas official says no white-tailed deer can be bought or sold at the facility where an animal with chronic wasting disease was found. Texas Animal Health Commission spokeswoman Kyle McNulty said Thursday that the case involving a 2-year-old white-tailed deer at a Medina County breeding facility was confirmed by a federal lab in Iowa. CWD was first detected in Texas in 2012 in free-ranging mule deer in far West Texas. The disease is caused by proteins believed to be spread through deer urine, saliva and feces. CWD has been found in deer in 23 states and two Canadian provinces since first being recognized in Colorado in 1967. There is no evidence humans are at risk. Medina County is just west of San Antonio. – See http://www.dailyjournal.net/view/story/7388a63d74bb4fdbb19635cabfa1cbe8/TX–Chronic-Wasting-Disease

RABIES:

California 07/02/15 Mendocino County: A cat in the Fort Bragg area has tested positive for rabies, and is the first animal to do so within Mendocino County since 2012, according to the Mendocino County Health and Human Services Agency . . . In California, most cases of rabies occur in skunks and bats, but also in a variety of wild animals including foxes, according to the HHSA. – See http://www.ukiahdailyjournal.com/general-news/20150702/cat-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-fort-bragg

Looking-for-Kittens-001California 07/08/15 Monterey County: A domestic cat owned by a resident of the City of Monterey has tested positive for rabies. Officials are investigating to determine if all those who were exposed to the virus are being treated. – See http://www.kionrightnow.com/news/local-news/monterey-county-warning-over-rabies-case/34024662

South Carolina 06/29/15 Richland County: The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control has referred 11 people to their private health care providers for post-exposure treatment after being potentially exposed to a rabid cat in Richland County near Chapin. After roaming outdoors, the family cat returned home on May 29,  with visible wounds caused by an unknown animal, DHEC officials said.  The incident was reported to DHEC once the cat began showing symptoms of rabies around June 25. During that period, the cat exposed family members and the veterinary clinic staff who treated the animal. The cat was not current on its rabies vaccine. It was confirmed rabid on June 26. – For complete article see http://www.wistv.com/story/29434501/family-cat-exposes-11-people-to-rabies-in-richland-county

Three FLORIDIANS hospitalized after BEE attack ~ NEW JERSEY resident attacked by COYOTE ~ FERAL CATS pose risk of TYPHUS to general public ~ FLEA infested PRAIRIE DOG den in ARIZONA tests positive for BUBONIC PLAGUE ~ New book updating LYME DISEASE ~ RABIES reports from GA, NY & NC.

Honey bee. Photo by Vera Buhl. Wikimedia Commons.

Honey bee. Photo by Vera Buhl. Wikimedia Commons.

Florida 04/06/15 wfla.com: Pasco Fire Rescue crews responded to a report of a bee attack in New Port Richey Sunday afternoon in which three people were hospitalized. The wild bee hive was in a tree in the 7800 block of Calabash Lane. Experts believe there are between 20,000 and 30,000 bees in the hive. The neighbor Alisson Osteen saw the bees from her home. “I saw my neighbor’s brother on the ground rolling, just covered in bees all over his face, his neck, his arms. So I called 911,” she said. “He was screaming for help.” Pasco County Fire Rescue firefighters used a hose to spray the bees to get them to disperse and help the two men. They had as many as about 50 stings each. A woman who walked out of her home also received about a dozen stings but was not as seriously injured. Osteen said she didn’t see how it happened, but there was a ladder by the tree. “I don’t know if that was the bee keeper’s ladder or if that was the ladder they were using to touch the nest if they were trying to remove it themselves trying to get honey. I don’t know what they were trying to do,” she said. Firefighters cleared the scene at about 2 p.m. Sunday. Nobody on the crew was injured or stung. Crews are expected to return to the hive on Monday, however the bee expert is waiting for the bees to calm down before doing anything with the hive. – http://www.wfla.com/story/28724800/bees-sting-4-in-pasco-2-in-hospital

COYOTE:

Coyote%20stalking%20prey%20-%20note%20radio%20collar%20and%20ear%20tags%20for%20research%20projectNew Jersey 04/06/15 northjersey.com: by Jim Norman – A man working in his garden in the Twin Brooks area of (Saddle River) was attacked Monday by a coyote that was then hunted down and euthanized, authorities said. The man, whose identity was not released, was taken to a hospital for treatment and then released for recovery at home, according to a report on the Saddle River Police Department’s Facebook page. The man was attacked from behind by the animal and managed to escape, the police report said. Officers who investigated the incident learned that the same coyote had attacked a neighbor’s dog last week, requiring the dog’s owner to have it treated at a veterinarian’s office, police said. In addition, the police report said, workers in the area reported having seen the coyote several times on Monday, acting aggressively toward other dogs. Officers who responded to the attack saw the coyote running through a neighbor’s yard during daylight and called a local pest control company, which arrived, along with officers from the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. The coyote was found in a wooded area and put down, police said. The animal’s body was removed by the Fish and Wildlife officers for testing and analysis. Police asked any resident who has had an encounter with the coyote to call 201-327-5300, to document the event. Police also are reminding local residents to report aggressive wildlife behavior immediately, to head off the chance of another attack. – See http://www.northjersey.com/news/coyote-euthanized-after-it-attacks-saddle-river-man-1.1303757

TYPHUS:

typhus-transmission-cycleCalifornia 04/06/15 Orange County: by Matthew Cunningham – Flea-borne (endemic) typhus is carried by the common cat flea, which is found primarily on feral cats, raccoon and opossums. Common cat fleas bite people and their infected feces enters the bloodstream, causing severe illness. In 2006, there was a single reported case of flea-borne typhus infection in Orange County – the first since 2013. Between 2006 and 2014, there have been more than 100 reported cases of flea-borne typhus in OC. – See http://www.publicceo.com/2015/04/misplaced-outrage-over-anaheims-ban-on-feeding-feral-cats/

BUBONIC PLAGUE:

prairiedogUSParksArizona 04/06/15 upi.com/Health_News: by Brooks Hays – Arizona health officials and wildlife managers are monitoring flea infestations more closely after several specimens in Picture Canyon, near Flagstaff, tested positive for Yersinia pestis, the bacteria that causes the disease known as the bubonic plague. Officials grew concerned when they were alerted to a prairie dog den that appeared to features an unusually large number of dead or dying prairie dogs. Several surrounding burrows were tested, revealing the culprit to be the plague . . . Nearby burrows are now being cleared and disinfected, in an effort to stem any possible outbreak of the disease. Late last week, following the positive test, officials returned to test a much broader area for the dangerous bacteria. Those results are due back later this week. – See http://www.upi.com/Health_News/2015/04/06/Officials-concerned-by-plague-carrying-fleas-in-Arizona/7041428341911/

LYME DISEASE:

LymeDiseaseBookBook Review 04/06/15 washingtonpost.com: by Nancy Szokan – In in the 1970s, public health professionals began noticing a kind of rheumatoid arthritis affecting children around Lyme, Conn. Soon they began associating it with a skin rash, possibly caused by a deer tick. In 1981, researchers Willy Burgdorfer and Alan G. Barbour identified the cause of what had come to be known as Lyme disease. Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that there are 300,000 new cases a year. So there’s probably a large audience for a new book by Barbour, who’s now a professor of medicine and microbiology at the medical school at the University of California at Irvine: “Lyme Disease: Why It’s Spreading, How It Makes You Sick, and What to Do About It.” Drawing on his decades of research and involvement with patients, he gives a thorough and comprehensive overview of the disease, including the biology of the microbe that causes it and the tick that transmits it; how diagnosis is made and test results are interpreted; the use of antibiotics; disease prevention at the individual and community level; and the controversial condition called Post-Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome, in which symptoms persist for years after antibiotic therapy ends. He ends with a somewhat pessimistic view of how we as a society are handling a disease that seems to be more prevalent every year. It’s not a particularly easy read; Barbour writes like the highly educated scientist he is, and he doesn’t mince technical terms. But his indisputable credentials and his clearly sympathetic concern make this a worthwhile book. – See http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/from-a-doctor-who-helped-discover-lyme-disease-a-broad-update/2015/04/06/1fd66e9e-d893-11e4-b3f2-607bd612aeac_story.html

RABIES:

Georgia 04/02/15 Worth County: A dog that was adopted by a southwest Georgia resident using an online service has tested positive for rabies. Existing pets in the household didn’t have up-to-date vaccinations and “(a)s a result, this well-intentioned individual ended up losing beloved pets that had been exposed and could not be saved,” a county health specialist said. – See http://worthit2u.net/worth/2015/04/02/public-health-confirms-rabies-case-in-worth/

sidebar_RabiesAlertNew York 04/05/15 Franklin County: A second person is undergoing treatment for exposure to the rabies virus, and two more are being evaluated after caring for dogs that had attacked raccoons later found to be rabid. “I cannot stress enough the importance of getting your dog vaccinated,” Public Health Director Kathleen F. Strack said. Cats should also be vaccinated, she said. – See http://www.watertowndailytimes.com/news05/second-person-in-franklin-county-undergoing-rabies-treatment-20150405

North Carolina 04/01/15 Robeson County: A dog that was shot after attacking its owners in Pembroke has tested positive for rabies. Two victims, a father and daughter, have been advised to begin post-exposure rabies treatments. – See http://robesonian.com/news/health/152667014/Rabid-dog-attacks-its-owners

MURINE TYPHUS reported in CALIFORNIA communities ~ Hungry COYOTES attacking large DOGS in CONNECTICUT ~ CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE within 12 miles of SHENANDOAH NATIONAL PARK ~ HIV VIRUS traced to GORILLAS in CAMEROON ~ RABIES reports from FL, TX & VA.

By Cody Pope (WikipediaUserCody.pope) CC BY-SA 2.5 (glicensesby-sa2.5), via Wikimedia Commons

By Cody Pope (WikipediaUserCody.pope) CC BY-SA 2.5 (glicensesby-sa2.5), via Wikimedia Commons

California 03/05/15 nbclosangeles.com: by Keith Esparros – A form of typhus with flu-like symptoms that can lead to hospitalization if left untreated is popping up in parts of Southern California, and possums are the likely culprits. Cases of Murine Typhus, an infection spread by either flea bites or contact with flea feces, are being reported in the communities of Altadena, Los Feliz and Pasadena and South Pasadena, which have large possum populations, said Dr. Rachel Civen of the LA County Health Department, who calls it “a niche disease.” Symptoms include high fever, nausea, fatigue and muscle weakness. Forty — six cases were reported in LA County in 2014, three in Altadena, where crews posted notices and launched a possum search. The opossums found in Southern California are also referred to as possums. “Possums have massive proportions of fleas on them,” Civen said. “Thousands of them.” That makes them ideal carriers for the disease. Fleas carry the disease from rats, opossums or feral cats, and can infect the family pet. “It’s a pretty benign disease for dogs and cats,” Civen said, but the pet can infect other fleas, which then can bite and infect humans. Murine typhus symptoms are similar to flu, and can be difficult to pinpoint and diagnose. – For complete article see http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local/Possums-Likely-Culprit-as-Niche-Disease-Appears-in-SoCal-Communities-295251451.html

COYOTES:

lacy%20faces%20coyoteConnecticut 03/06/15 cbslocal.com: Coyotes were attacking in Connecticut this week, with three reports of the animals hunting down dogs. Luckily, all the dogs survived. But as CBS2’s Jessica Schneider reported, animal control officials said there is a big reason some big dogs are becoming prey. At least one coyote has been making the rounds in suburban Stamford – looming dangerously close to homes and setting its sights on several family dogs. “There was something following (my dog); chasing her,” said Stamford resident Karen Hart. Hart snapped a photo of her 2-year-old shepherd mix, named Kylie, running for her life “She got into the house and I slammed the door just as the coyote was approaching the front door,” Hart said. There were four attacks in a period of one week. All the dogs got away with minor cuts and scratches. But several owners have decided to keep their pets inside, alarmed at the coyotes’ brazen tactics. “This is very odd, because three of the dogs — a shepherd mix, a golden retriever and a German short-haired pointer – all obviously much larger than this coyote,” said Stamford police Capt. Richard Conklin. Police said coyote attacks are so prevalent this winter because of the extremely harsh weather conditions – so much so that coyotes have even started living under people’s decks. – For video see http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2015/03/06/coyotes-seen-going-after-large-dogs-in-stamford-connecticut/

CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE:

whitetaildeernpsVirginia 03/06/15 crozetgazette.com: Chronic Wasting Disease, an always-fatal neurological disease affecting white-tail deer, mule deer, elk and moose, has been discovered at Front Royal, within twelve miles of the Shenandoah National Park’s northern boundary, Park Superintendent Jim Northup told an audience at Crozet Library February 5. In 2009 it was discovered about 23 miles away from the park. A park report describes the advance as “rapid.” “It’s significant now in West Virginia,” he said. Northup said that the character of the 105-mile Skyline Drive and the edge-habitat nature of deer likely means that once the disease invades the park, it will advance southward along the scenic road and reach southern counties bordering the park. “The only way to slow it is to thin the deer herd,” he said. – For complete article see http://www.crozetgazette.com/2015/03/chronic-wasting-disease-nears-shenandoah-park/

HUMAN IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS:

Cameroon gorillas

Cameroon gorillas

Global 03/06/15 newseveryday.com: by Revathi Siva Kumar – Four strains of the AIDS virus can be sourced to gorillas in southwest Cameroon, said an international team of scientists whose report was recently published. Hence, scientists understand the origin of the HIV virus, according to france24. HIV (HIV-1) has at least four strains. Known as Groups M, N, O and P, and every virus had its own origin from ape to man, on four occasions. While two groups, ie M and N have been traced to chimpanzees in Cameroon, the origin of the O and P strains have not been traced. The team, led by Martine Peeters, a virologist at France’s Research and Development Institute (IRD) and the University of Montpellier, has released a report that appeared in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. HIV-1’s Group M is the most widespread and show more than 40 million people that are infected around the world. So far, just two humans have been found to be infected with Group P. Group O has been identified in central and western Africa, and has infected 100,000. The identification was possible through genetic samples from chimpanzees and gorillas from Cameroon, Gabon, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Fecal samples from western lowland gorillas, eastern lowland gorillas, and mountain gorillas in Cameroon, Gabon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Uganda were screened to detect SIVgor infection. Four field sites were found in southern Cameroon with western lowland gorillas harbouring SIVgor, according to pennews.

Cameroon chimpanzees

Cameroon chimpanzees

“From this study and others that our team has conducted in the past it has become clear that both chimpanzees and gorillas harbor viruses that are capable of crossing the species barrier to humans and have the potential to cause major disease outbreaks,” Peeters said. “Understanding emerging disease origins is critical to gauge future human infection risks.” Ever since 1981, HIV has infected 78 million, which destroys immune cells and makes the body vulnerable to tuberculosis, pneumonia and other such illnesses. About 39 million have died, according to UN estimates. The team of scientists is from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Montpellier, the University of Edinburgh, and other institutions. Beatrice Hahn, a professor of Medicine and Microbiology, and others from Penn were part of the team, whose findings appear online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. According to UN estimates, the illness has claimed 39 million lives so far, reports biznews. – See http://www.newseveryday.com/articles/10425/20150306/hiv-virus-traced-gorillas-cameroon.htm

RABIES:

dog468y9i0Florida 03/09/15 Palm Beach County: A bat found in the mouth of a vaccinated pet dog in Palm Beach Gardens has tested positive for rabies and family members who handled the bat and/or were in contact with the dog are being advised to seek immediate medical advice and treatment. – See http://www.cbs12.com/news/top-stories/stories/vid_24063.shtml

Texas 03/08/15 McLennan County: A stray dog offered for adoption on Facebook attacked a mother and 4-year-old daughter who arrived in a Brookshire Bros. grocery store parking lot in Lorena on Saturday offering to take it. The child was bitten in the face and the mother in the face and hands by the dog described as a possible pit bull-mastiff mix. – See http://www.wacotrib.com/news/police/lorena-police-woman-child-injured-in-dog-attack/article_c12e1272-ba6b-555f-96b1-fc2902d91131.html

help984-05834Virginia 03/09/15 James City County: by Becca Mitchell – The Peninsula Health District is looking for a grey-striped male tabby cat that bit a person on Saturday, March 7th in the vicinity of Forge Road and Highway 60 in Toano. If the cat isn’t found, the victims may have to undergo post exposure treatment for the prevention of rabies. If found, the cat will not be taken from its owner, only placed on an in-home confinement period of 10 days. Anyone who has seen an animal fitting this description should call the Peninsula Health District – Williamsburg Area Environmental Health Office at 757-603-4277. – See http://wtkr.com/2015/03/09/tabby-cat-sought-for-rabies-testing-in-toano-after-biting-a-person/

Packs of WOLVES, COYOTES and FOXES are roaming NEW JERSEY city’s streets ~ COYOTES moving into GEORGIA city neighborhoods ~ TEXAS reports first case of MURINE TYPHUS in 80 years ~ NEW YORK scientist reports TICKS carrying LYME DISEASE emerging earlier ~ RABIES report from TEXAS.

Wolf pack. Courtesy U.S. Fish & Wildlife.

Wolf pack. Courtesy U.S. Fish & Wildlife.

New Jersey 02/20/15 nj.com: by Jenna Pizzi – Packs of wild animals including wolves, coyotes and foxes are running around on city streets after dark and residents are raising concerns about their safety, according to a Trenton councilman. Councilman George Muschal said he received reports from residents about the animals and saw a gray fox cross in front of his truck last Tuesday at the corner of Hudson and Broad Streets. “If a child is out there or a dog in the yard it might be a problem,” said Muschal, speaking during a council meeting Thursday night Muschal said residents have also emailed and called his office reportedly seeing wolves in the city. Wolves haven’t been spotted in the wild in New Jersey in more than 100 years. According to information on the state Department of Environmental Protection’s website, wolves have become larger and in varying colors in the Eastern United States due to past inbreeding between coyotes and wolves. Muschal said he is not sure if it was a coyote or a wolf that was spotted by residents, but said he only took the individuals that called into this office at their word. “They just know that it doesn’t belong there,” Muschal said. “I’m not gonna say that there’s not a wolf.” Councilman Zachary Chester said he has received concerns from residents about coyotes and foxes — but not wolves. – See http://www.nj.com/mercer/index.ssf/2015/02/wolves_coyotes_and_foxes_roaming_trenton_streets_c.html

1179coyoteGeorgia 02/24/15 myfoxatlanta.com: by Jaclyn Schultz – A number of coyotes have recently been spotted around busy neighborhoods in metro Atlanta. One woman, however, said a coyote attacked her pets. “The coyote came here close to the house. There were feathers all over the yard,” said Jennifer Ellis, who lives in Grant Park with her pet chickens, dog and rabbit. “There’s never been an attack like this one.” One Grant Park neighbor said off camera, his dogs scared another coyote away. Other neighbors said word has gotten around about other sightings. “They start to associate food with humans and remove their natural wariness,” said Professor Chris Mowry of Berry College, who started the Atlanta Coyote Project. The project has surveyed thousands of metro Atlanta residents who have reported seeing a coyote, and is trying to study if more are moving into busy urban areas. Mowry said reports of coyotes, though, have increased. He says too many people living around in-town Atlanta make their homes appealing to wildlife, such as leaving out pet food and exposing trash. “They walk by and see an easy meal and will try to take it,” he said. Though trapping a coyote is always an option for a resident, Mowry said another coyote will move in afterwards. He said the most effective prevention is eliminating what coyotes could eat on your property, installing motion sensor lights, and hanging wind chimes to create noise. He also said fencing should be higher than six feet tall and should even extend below ground to prevent digging. Pets should also be supervised while outside. – For video see http://www.myfoxatlanta.com/story/28182721/coyotes-spotted-in-atlanta-neighborhoods

MURINE TYPHUS:

453723837Texas 02/16/15 healio.com: Scientists at the University of Texas Medical Branch say murine typhus has been identified in Galveston signaling the re-emergence of the disease. Of 18 adult patients evaluated, seven cases of the disease were confirmed. Fleas that infest rats, opossums and cats are likely to be spreading the disease. Blanton LS, et al. Emerg Infect Dis. 2015;doi:10.3201/eid2103.140716. – See http://www.healio.com/infectious-disease/zoonotic-infections/news/online/%7B47c536b9-6693-4cac-abc0-1fa1a88a933e%7D/first-cases-of-murine-typhus-in-8-decades-reported-in-texas

LYME DISEASE:

logo66874New York 02/18/15 newsday.com: A Hudson Valley researcher says ticks that carry Lyme disease are emerging earlier in spring and spreading into new geographic regions, a trend corresponding with data on climate warming trends. The conclusions were based on 19 years of data collected at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook in Dutchess County, a hotbed of tick-borne disease. Biologist Richard Ostfeld at the Cary Institute says nearly two decades of data revealed climate warming trends correlated with earlier spring feeding by nymphal ticks, sometimes by as much as three weeks. – See http://www.newsday.com/news/health/ticks-carrying-lyme-disease-are-emerging-earlier-researcher-says-1.9949893

RABIES:       

635603854191973597-rabiesdogTexas 02/24/15 kvue.com: A dog that visited Austin’s Zilker Park Dog Park off leash between 3 and 6 p.m. on February 8th has been diagnosed with rabies. The black-and-white Border Collie mix was seen about 50 yards from the park’s sand volleyball courts and reportedly had contact with other dogs at the park. Anyone who came in contact with this dog, or whose pet did, should seek immediate medical advice. – See http://www.kvue.com/story/news/health/2015/02/24/officials-warn-of-possible-rabies-exposure-at-zilker/23946897/

NORTH CAROLINA man kills RABID BOBCAT with tire iron ~ CONNECTICUT town seeks to trap COYOTE killing PETS ~ CALIFORNIA confirms four new cases of MURINE TYPHUS ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS & WEST NILE VIRUS reports from AL, CT, GA, ME, MAx3, & CANADA: ONTARIO ~ RABIES reports from NH, & TX.

Bobcat. Photo by Terry Spivey. Courtesy U.S.D.A. Forest Service.

North Carolina 08/23/12 starnewsonline.com: by Gareth McGrath – A bobcat in Oak Island that was killed with a tire iron after attacking people and a dog last week is the fourth confirmed case of rabies in Brunswick County this year. The report adds to a worrisome trend of rabies cases in the area for 2012. New Hanover County has recorded 13 cases so far this year. There were six confirmed rabies cases in the county in 2011. On Aug. 17, a man on Long Beach Road on the mainland part of Oak Island saw a bobcat chasing his dog. According to a release from the Brunswick County Health Department, the bobcat took a single swipe at the dog and then fled into the woods. About an hour later, the bobcat charged a second man in his yard and tried to attack him. The man grabbed a tire iron, threw it at the animal and killed it, the release says. The bobcat was sent to the N.C. State Laboratory of Public Health in Raleigh for testing, where it was found to be rabid. Health officials determined that neither man needed treatment, since they hadn’t come in physical contact with the animal, and the dog only needed a booster shot since it was up to date on its rabies vaccinations. – For complete article see http://www.starnewsonline.com/article/20120823/ARTICLES/120829834?Title=Rabid-bobcat-killed-in-Oak-Island

Connecticut 08/23/12 patch.com: Danbury officials are searching for a coyote trapper who the city can hire to remove a coyote who has been attacking pets along Tammany Trail and neighboring streets. People have been asking why the city or the police or the DEEP doesn’t just shoot the coyote. Danbury is a city and the city has ordinances that say people can’t fire guns in Danbury. The city will hire a trapper instead. “I’m glad,” said Cathy Moore, 15 Tammany Trail, who lost a cat, perhaps, to the coyote everyone has seen stalking the backyards of Tammany Trail. Moore has gone door to door in the neighborhood to alert people to the threat. – For complete article see http://danbury.patch.com/articles/danbury-to-capture-and-remove-tammany-coyote

Flea.

California 08/23/12 ktla.com: An outbreak of a dangerous disease is spreading in the San Fernando Valley — flea-borne typhus. Health officials have confirmed that four people have contracted Murine typhus in Burbank. Two cases originated in the 700 block of Screenland Drive. Both of those men were treated at local hospitals and released. – For complete article see http://www.ktla.com/news/landing/ktla-typhus-outbreak-burbank,0,6483955.story

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

Alabama 08/23/12 Birmingham, Jefferson County: WNV has killed a horse in the city, but a local vet believes others have also died of the disease. Statewide, there have been 12 confirmed human cases of WNV so far this year. – See http://www.waff.com/story/19350054/west-nile-virus-kills-horse-infects-more-people

Connecticut 08/23/12 dph.ct.gov: Health Alert – Officials announced today that two more residents have tested positive for WNV infection. These results bring the total number of human cases of WNV infection in the state to four this year. The state also announced that mosquitoes trapped in Voluntown on August 13 tested positive for WNV. – See https://mail.google.com/mail/?hl=en&shva=1#inbox/1395559e2dce59f3

Georgia 08/23/12 wwntradio.com: The number of  WNV human cases in South Georgia has risen to 12 according to the Southwest Health District, and three people have died. One of the deaths was in Early County, and two were in Dougherty, and all in the last week. The 12 cases were diagnosed in Dougherty, two in Lee, one in Early, one in Mitchell, and one in Worth counties. – See http://www.wwntradio.com/news/news.php/displayType/article/10972/2012/08/three-confirmed-west-nile-deaths-in-southwest-ga

Maine 08/23/12 mainepublichealth.gov: Update – On Aug. 17, a mosquito pool tested positive for WNV. The pool of mosquitoes was collected Aug. 1 in the town of Lebanon. Since then, a second mosquito pool from Cumberland County tested positive.- For complete Update see https://mail.google.com/mail/?hl=en&shva=1#inbox/139546fa4e37c038

Massachusetts 08/23/12 Hopkinton, Middlesex County: Health department director Edward Wirtanen said today that WNV and EEE have been discovered in mosquitoes trapped within municipal limits. – See http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/news/x1843773346/EEE-and-West-Nile-virus-found-in-Hopkinton-mosquitoes

Massachusetts 08/23/12 Ashland, Middlesex County: The local health director announced today that WNV has been detected in mosquitoes trapped within municipal limits. – See http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/newsnow/x2118934649/Mosquitoes-in-Ashland-test-positive-for-West-Nile-virus

Massachusetts 08/23/12 Georgetown, Essex County: The state’s Department of Health has classified Georgetown at a “critical risk” for EEE, a rare but serious viral disease. According to an announcement on the Georgetown website, a horse tested positive for EEE earlier this week. – See http://www.wickedlocal.com/georgetown/news/x1405831771/Triple-E-found-in-Georgetown#axzz24R1wfSCP

Canada:

Ontario 08/23/12 Windsor & Essex counties: There are six new possible human cases of WNV in the counties, bringing the total number of confirmed or possible local cases this summer to 10. . . The 10 local cases range in age from a 25-year-old woman to a 71-year-old man. The 10 are made up of six women and four men. – For complete article see http://blogs.windsorstar.com/2012/08/23/six-new-possible-cases-of-west-nile-virus-in-windsor-essex/

Rabies:

New Hampshire 08/23/12 Farmington, Strafford County: Police are actively patrolling the area of Acorn Court, picking up felines, after reports of a woman bitten by a cat and exposed to rabies. Police are encouraging pet owners to keep their cats inside, or to have readily identifiable owner information on their pet, in case they are picked up during the search. Interim Police Chief Kevin Willey says the department will make every effort to return owned cats to their caretakers. On Aug. 21, the department investigated a report of a cat bite on Acorn Court, a dead end street in the downtown area. Upon testing the cat, it was determined the animal had rabies and information was passed along to the bitten resident so she could make arrangements for medical treatment, Willey said . . . According to a department press release, Animal Control Officer Kate Koval learned numerous other cats lived in and around the victim’s residence on Acorn Court. A nearby garage had at least six cats, according to police report, in varying degrees of health. Those cats were captured and euthanized before being sent to the state lab for testing. – See http://www.fosters.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20120823/GJNEWS_01/120829875/-1/FOSNEWS

Texas 08/23/12 San Marcos, Hays County: A bat that was found inside the front foyer at San Marcos High School on Monday has tested positive for rabies. A public health notice has been issued. Anyone who might have come in contact with the bat is advised to seek immediate medical advice. – See http://www.kxan.com/dpp/news/local/hays/rabid-bat-found-at-san-marcos-hs

CALIFORNIA scientists now know L.A.’S Griffith Park has a resident MOUNTAIN LION ~ CALIFORNIA’s Long Beach residents warned of increase in FLEA-borne TYPHUS cases ~ MAINE issues health advisory due to increase in TICK-borne ANAPLASMOSIS ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS and/or WEST NILE VIRUS reports from FL, ID, IL, MA, NJ, NY, NC, OK, PA, RI, & SD ~ RABIES reports from CT, MD, NE, NJ, & NC.

Mountain lion. Courtesy U.S. Army.

California 08/14/12 latimes.com: For the first time, scientists have evidence of a mountain lion inhabiting Griffith Park. His name is P-22. That’s P, as in puma. “We never had any definitive proof of a mountain lion living in Griffith Park,” said Jeff Sikich, a National Park Service biologist. “We believe this is pretty significant, that it’s surrounded by such intense urbanization.” . . . Sometime after P-22 entered the park, he triggered a remote camera set up for a general wildlife survey. Photo in hand, Sikich set out to catch him. He installed three humane traps in the area. He also set up a camera at each trap, rigged to send any images to his cellphone if triggered. Nine days later, at 2 a.m., his cellphone rang. He and other scientists raced to the site, a Department of Water and Power property just west of the park. Sikich used a blowpipe to administer a sedative. The team spent about an hour gathering samples and taking measurements. Most important, they attached a collar with both GPS and very high frequency radio signal technology so they could track where and when the lion made his kills. They woke the animal and released him. The GPS function went dead, however, leaving the researchers with only radio telemetry to generally track the feline’s peregrinations. In recent weeks, Sikich has used radio frequencies to attempt to zero in on the lion’s whereabouts so he can recapture him and apply a new collar. So far, the beast has eluded him by ranging throughout the park’s wild lands and over the ridge toward Forest Lawn Memorial-Park. – For complete article see http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/08/photos-first-proof-of-mountain-lion-living-in-griffith-park-1.html

Norway rat. Courtesy of CDC.

California 08/13/12 presstelegram.com: The number of flea-borne typhus cases are up over last year, and local health officials are warning residents to take precautions. So far this year, 11 cases of the illness have been reported to the Long Beach Health Department, compared to nine for all of last year. The flea-borne typhus – known as murine typhus – is a disease spread by fleas living on rats and mice, opossums, cats and raccoons, health officials explained. People get the disease through the bites of infected fleas, adding that it isn’t spread from person to person. – See http://www.presstelegram.com/news/ci_21305093/long-beach-health-officials-warn-flea-borne-typhus

Deer tick. Courtesy CDC.

Maine 08/09/12 Maine CDC: Health Advisory – Anaplasmosis is a bacterial infection that is carried by Ixodes scapularis (the deer tick), which is the same tick that also carries Lyme disease.  Anaplasmosis is an emerging infection in Maine, and as of August 8, 2012, 38 cases have been reported to Maine CDC from 8 counties (Androscoggin, Cumberland, Hancock, Kennebec, Knox, Lincoln, Somerset and York).  During 2011, a total of 26 cases were reported. – For more information go to http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/newhan.shtml

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

Florida 08/14/12 Walton County: Sentinel chickens have tested positive for EEE and WNV.  The risk of transmission to humans has increased. – See http://www.waltonsun.com/news/mosquito-9514-county-walton.html

Idaho 08/14/12 Owyhee County: Health officials say mosquitoes collected in the Bruneau area have tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.sacbee.com/2012/08/14/4724115/owyhee-latest-id-county-to-find.html

Illinois 08/13/12 Winnebago County: Mosquitoes test positive for WNV at two Rockford area parks.  One pool of mosquitoes was at Alpine Park on Rockford’s southeast side, the other is at Legends in Roscoe. – See http://mystateline.com/fulltext-news?nxd_id=348392

Massachusetts 08/13/12 Peabody, Essex County: Mosquitoes collected last week have tested positive for WNV. Plans for pesticide spraying are being posted on the city’s website. – See http://www.boston.com/yourtown/news/peabody/2012/08/mosquitos_in_peabody_test_posi.html

New Jersey 08/14/12 Salem County: An 11-year-old quarter horse mare has tested positive for WNV, the first case in the state this year. The animal began showing signs of illness on Aug. 4 and was subsequently euthanized. – See http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=20480

New York 08/14/12 Brooklyn, Kings County: Health officials have confirmed that WNV was found on Aug. 3 in Windsor Terrace, as well as Dyker Heights, Greenwood Heights and Starrett City. – See http://windsorterrace.patch.com/articles/west-nile-virus-detected-in-windsor-terrace

North Carolina 08/14/12 Wayne County: Health officials say a resident has become the state’s first WNV-related death so far this year. – See http://www.sacbee.com/2012/08/14/4723742/wayne-county-man-dies-from-west.html

Oklahoma 08/14/12 Oklahoma County: Health officials have reported the first WNV-related death in the state since 2009 and issued a public health warning, saying they are concerned the potentially deadly disease will reach record numbers. The victim is described only as an adult over the age of 75, according to Dr. Kristy Bradley, state epidemiologist at the Oklahoma State Department of Health. There are 55 confirmed WNV human cases in Oklahoma so far in 2012. – See http://www.necn.com/08/14/12/1st-West-Nile-Virus-death-reported-in-Ok/landing_scitech.html?&apID=1bd6edf19b564c7782e7b62030f93c27

Pennsylvania 08/13/12 Delaware County: The Department of Environmental Protection confirmed human cases of WNV in two men on Monday. This comes only five days after the Department of Health reported WNV human cases in Lancaster and Franklin counties. Doctors and officials say there is an unprecedented level of mosquitoes carrying the virus this year. – See http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/West-Nile-Virus-Confirmed-in-2-Delco-Men–166058186.html

Rhode Island 08/14/12 Tiverton, Newport County: A mosquito trapped in the central part of the city has tested positive for EEE. It is the first positive EEE mosquito sample found in the state this year. – See http://www.wpri.com/dpp/news/local_news/east_bay/eee-found-in-mosquito-in-tiverton

South Dakota 08/14/12 doh.sd.gov: Update – Since last Friday 10 human cases have been added to the WNV report, bringing the season total to 41 WNV cases. In addition 15 viremic blood donors, 3 WNV horse cases, 1 bird and 56 positive mosquitoes have also been reported. WNV has been detected in 25 of South Dakota’s 66 counties. – See http://doh.sd.gov/WestNile/PDF/WNVupdate8-14.pdf

Rabies:

Connecticut 08/14/12 Groton, New London County: A raccoon from the area of Noank Ledyard Road has tested positive for rabies, the Ledge Light Health District said in a public health alert today. – See http://groton.patch.com/articles/rabid-raccoon-found-in-groton

Maryland 08/13/12 California, St. Mary’s County: A feral kitten picked up from Bayside Way has tested positive for rabies. Officials say four other kittens and a mother cat related to the rabid kitten are considered to be potentially rabid. They have not been found yet. – See http://www.wusa9.com/news/article/216570/158/Stray-Kitten-Tests-Positive-For-Rabies-In-Md

Nebraska 08/14/12 Chadron, Dawes County: A cat submitted by an animal care clinic, and a skunk found east of the city, have both tested positive for rabies. – See http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/local/communities/chadron/rabies-cases-confirmed-here/article_5de4afa6-e661-11e1-8280-0019bb2963f4.html

New Jersey 08/14/12 Piscataway, Middlesex County:  A bat that was captured after it flew into a home near Pleasant Avenue and West 4th Street has tested positive for rabies. It is the fifth such inflected animal found in the county this year. – See http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012/08/rabid_bat_invades_piscataway_h.html

North Carolina 08/14/12 Fayetteville, Cumberland County: A dead bat found in the 300 block of Palomar Street has tested positive for rabies. – See http://abclocal.go.com/wtvd/story?section=news/local&id=8773369

MONTANA Fish & Wildlife’s collared WOLVES being killed by MOUNTAIN LIONS ~ VIRGINIA scientists developing test to detect active cases of LYME DISEASE ~ CALIFORNIA resident believed to have contracted TYPHUS from a FERAL CAT ~ CALIFORNIA’s Fresno County finds MOSQUITOES with WEST NILE VIRUS ~ RABIES reports from AR, CO (2), DE, IL, NY (3), NC, PA (3) ~ WASHINGTON SALMON farm to destroy entire stock due to IHN VIRUS.

Collared gray wolf. Photo by state of Minnesota.

Montana 05/27/12 missoulian.com: by Perry Backus – Mountain lions are taking a toll on Liz Bradley’s collared wolves in the Bitterroot this year. Since January, two wolves radio-collared by the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks wolf biologist have been killed by mountain lions. Last week, she found the latest dead wolf in the Warm Springs area, west of Sula. Like all the others she’s investigated since 2009, the wolf’s skull showed a severe puncture wound – a trademark of a lion kill. In the Sula case, the lion ate a good portion of the wolf and then covered the carcass with debris. “It’s hard to say what happened,” Bradley said. “There was no elk or deer carcass nearby that they may have been competing over.” There was, however, a deer carcass near the dead wolf she found in the Carlton Creek area west of Lolo in January. In that case, the wolf wasn’t consumed, but it did have the same canine tooth puncture through the skull. “That one was probably a conflict,” she said.

Last year, Bradley found two dead wolves that were probably killed by mountain lions. One was in Davis Creek, east of Lolo, and the other was south of Conner. In both cases, the carcasses were too far decomposed for positive identification on the cause of death. Both had clear puncture wounds through the top of their skulls. In 2009, the first apparent lion-killed wolf was discovered in the West Fork area. The number of wolf and lion encounters is unusual. “I haven’t heard of it happening anywhere else,” Bradley said. “It’s pretty interesting that the Bitterroot has had so many.”

Large predators sometimes do kill each other. There have been documented cases of that happening in many places around the West. “They compete for the same resource,” she said. “When there is overlap in areas where you have lots of prey, conflicts occur.” Four of the five wolves that Bradley knows were probably killed by mountain lions were fitted with a radio collar. “It’s too bad because we don’t have those now,” she said. At the end of last year, Bradley had collars in seven packs in the Bitterroot. She’s now down to four. – For complete article see http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/mountain-lions-kill-collared-wolves-in-bitterroot/article_68c0c60c-d792-59e3-b736-5b10c17eb10a.html

National 04/23/12 gmu.edu: News Release – Alessandra Luchini, research assistant professor, and other researchers at Virginia’s George Mason University are evaluating a new type of diagnostic test they developed for humans and their canine pals to pinpoint tiny signs of the bacteria that lead to Lyme disease. A study of the new type of test is underway. (Call 800-615-0418 ext. 202 for more information about participating.) The test soon could be available commercially through privately held Ceres Nanosciences Inc., which partnered with Mason to develop the test and plans to market it to doctor’s offices and veterinarian clinics. The Lyme disease test is just in time for what promises to be a bumper crop of ticks this spring and summer.

California 05/25/12 ocregister.com: by Ron Gonzales – The Orange County Vector Control District has begun to set traps to catch feral cats in Santa Ana and distribute safety information after a Santa Ana resident contracted flea-borne typhus. Santa Ana officials said in an e-mail message they were notified by O.C. Vector Control that the agency had learned of a resident with a confirmed case of typhus. The resident lives in the area of Broadway and Washington Street. – For complete article see http://www.ocregister.com/news/santa-356066-control-typhus.html

California 05/25/12 Fresno County: West Nile Virus has been detected in mosquitoes in the county for the first time this year. – See http://www.kmph.com/story/18628835/mosquitoes-with-west-nile-virus-found-in-fresno-county

Arkansas 05/26/12 Hot Springs, Garland County: A skunk found in an undisclosed location in the city has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.necn.com/05/26/12/Skunk-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-weste/landing_health.html?&apID=8fd3c7ebd7f443a5a554463b2e46cd1d

Colorado 05/24/12 Pueblo, Pueblo County: A wild bat found at the Pueblo Zoo on Wednesday, May 23rd, in front of Vulture Stork Pen has tested positive for rabies. Public health officials are concerned about people who may have come in contact with the bat. – See http://www.krdo.com/news/31110467/detail.html

Colorado 05/24/12 Fort Collins, Larimer County: Two skunks, one found near Taft Hill and Vine Drive, and the other near Horsetooth and Taft Hill roads, have tested positive for rabies. This brings to five the number of skunks* found near Fort Collins that have tested positive for the virus this year. – See http://www.noco5.com/story/18619189/5th-skunk-near-fort-collins-confirmed-positive-for-rabies

(Author’s Note: * Since this posting three more skunks captured near Fort Collins have tested positive for rabies.)

Delaware 05/25/12 Newark, New Castle County: One person has been sent for post-exposure rabies treatment after being exposed to a raccoon that has tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.wgmd.com/?p=58249

Illinois 05/24/12 Thompsonville, Williamson County: A dead bat found in a rural area of Thompsonville earlier this week has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.bentoneveningnews.com/newsnow/x624603496/Bat-in-rural-Tville-tests-positive-for-rabies

New York 05/25/12 Denmark, Lewis County: A dead skunk discovered on the property of a local resident has tested positive for rabies. An unvaccinated dog that had contact with the carcass was euthanized. – See http://www.wktv.com/news/local/Dog-euthanized-after-contact-with-dead-rabid-skunk-in-Lewis-County-154164315.html

New York 05/24/12 Skaneateles, Onondaga County: A bat found inside a home has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.cnycentral.com/neighborhood/health/story.aspx?list=~\news\lists\health&id=758147#.T78Nv8WF7WA

New York 05/23/12 Knoxboro, Oneida County: A fox that attacked three people May 20th on Knoxboro Road has tested positive for rabies. – See http://oneidadispatch.com/articles/2012/05/23/news/doc4fbd5fe0d9703164386573.txt

North Carolina 05/23/12 Gibsonville, Guilford County: A raccoon that had contact with a person and two dogs on Jesse Road has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.thetimesnews.com/articles/health-55625-rabid-raccoon.html

Pennsylvania 05/26/12 South Huntingdon, Westmoreland County: A sick raccoon reported by a homeowner on Barren Run Road has tested positive for rabies. – See http://triblive.com/news/1866876-74/rabies-raccoon-positive-department-dog-huntingdon-south-tested-according-administered

Pennsylvania 05/25/12 Philadelphia, Philadelphia County: City officials are posting rabies alerts after a raccoon found in Wissahickon Park tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.myfoxphilly.com/dpp/news/local_news/Rabid_Raccoon_052512

Pennsylvania 05/23/12 Richland, Allegheny County: Three people potentially exposed to a bat that was trapped inside their home and tested positive for rabies are receiving post-exposure treatments. – See http://triblive.com/news/1849172-74/rabies-bat-bats-department-health-pennsylvania-tested-according-agriculture-allegheny

Washington 05/26/12 nwsource.com: A deadly fish virus has been detected in Washington state waters for the first time, forcing a fish farm to kill its entire stock of Atlantic salmon. Tests this month confirmed the presence of an influenza-like virus called infectious hematopoietic necrosis at a salmon farm off Bainbridge Island across from Seattle on Puget Sound, the Kitsap Sun reported ( http://is.gd/iyu6qf). The virus, or IHN virus, does not affect humans. It occurs naturally in wild sockeye salmon and can be carried by other fish, such as herring, which sometimes pass through fish net pens. John Kerwin, fish health supervisor for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, said the virus is a big concern. “Any first time it occurs, you don’t fully understand the impact to wild fish,” Kerwin told the newspaper. “We know it can impact (farm) fish. If we move fast, we can try to minimize the amplification.” Seattle-based American Gold Seafoods plans to remove more than a million pounds of Atlantic salmon from infected net pens in Rich Passage off the southern tip of Bainbridge Island. In April, the company noticed that fish were dying off at a fast rate. Test results this month confirmed the virus. – For complete article see http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2018293493_apwafishviruswashington1stldwritethru.html