Caution continues to be urged if encountering wildlife
HARRISBURG, Pa., June 13, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As monitoring efforts continue, Pennsylvania Game Commission officials today announced that no further suspected rabies cases involving wildlife have been found along Pennypack Creek in northeastern Philadelphia. This announcement follows two recent incidents – June 1 and 2 –involving a beaver that attacked three individuals. On June 3, the Game Commission announced that test results were positive for rabies.
"As part of that announcement, we encouraged residents to avoid the Pennypack Creek waterfront area between Bustleton Avenue and Roosevelt Boulevard in northeast Philadelphia," said Doug Killough, Game Commission Southeast Region director. "Residents should continue to avoid the waterfront area for another week, as we will continue to monitor the area for suspect wildlife. In addition to avoiding the waterfront in this area, we urge residents to avoid contact with wildlife."
On June 1, a husband and wife were fishing in the Bustleton Avenue area when a large beaver bit the woman's leg. As her husband attempted to assist her, the beaver turned and bit him in both arms and chest area. Game Commission WCO Jerry Czech, who serves Philadelphia and parts of Delaware County, responded to the hospital and interviewed the two victims.
On June 2, in the area of Roosevelt Boulevard, a child was bitten by a beaver. While at the hospital to interview the victim's family, WCO Czech received word that a Fairmount Park Ranger had captured a beaver 500 yards from where the child was bitten. WCO Czech responded to the scene and euthanized the beaver and transported it to the New Bolton Center.
On June 2, from 8 p.m. until midnight, and in follow up visits to the area, WCO Czech, other Game Commission WCOs and USDA Wildlife Services searched for other wildlife in the vicinity showing signs of rabies.
"It is very likely that this beaver got this disease from a raccoon," Killough said. "Residents seeing any wildlife, not just beavers, acting in a suspicious manner should report that information to the agency's Southeast Region Office at 610-926-3136 or local law enforcement.
"Also, if any human contact occurs with wildlife in the area, a report should be made to the Game Commission's Southeast Region Office once medical care has been administered."
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SOURCE Pennsylvania Game Commission