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Friday, September 3, 2010

Adirondack Adventure--No Bats, One Rabid Fox

In the above Animal Planet video, a man tries to defend himself from a rabid fox ...with a loaf of bread.

I just spent a week with my family in a cabin on the shore of Brant Lake in the Adirondacks. While walking along a main road we were met by a guy walking up his driveway with a 2 x 4. He said that a pregnant woman had just been bitten by a fox with rabies. She had to hit it with a paddle to get it to let go of her leg.

He graciously loaned me his 2 x 4 for the rest of our walk. I found fresh Fox scat on the road.

The next morning there was fresh fox scat a few feet from our cabin door. A Google search found this article:

Woman attacked by fox near Brant Lake

This got us to wondering how long a rabid fox will live once it reaches this late stage in the disease. Not long I think because I did not see any fresh scat for the rest of the week.

I also didn't see any bats. The insects were still there, banging on the screen door under the porch light but there was not a bat to be seen, anywhere. Coincidentally, two papers in the August 6 edition of Science discussed rabies transmission from bats to other species, and the potential for white nose syndrome to cause extinction.

No shortage of bullfrogs in the wetlands.

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