Rabies Awareness: Rabies in wildlife continues to pose risk to pets, people
Amador County Public Health and Animal Control Departments remind residents that rabies in wildlife continues to pose a risk to pets and people. Multiple wildlife have tested positive for rabies in 2016. In February 2016, a dog tested positive for rabies after contact with a skunk. The dog did not have current vaccination to provide protection from the rabies virus. Due to contact with this animal, multiple people are being treated with post-exposure prophylaxis as a preventative measure. These individuals have NOT tested positive for rabies.
“Rabies vaccinations and awareness are the best defense,” states Kelly Reason, Amador County Animal Control Director. “Owners need to remember the importance of having their pets vaccinated and to follow-up with required boosters as recommended by their veterinarian to keep their pets and families safe.” Indoor animals should also receive this vaccine as bats can be discovered by pets in the home.
In addition to vaccination, there are several things Amador residents can do to protect themselves and their pets:
• Avoid contact with wildlife and animals you do not know. If you or your pets have contact with wildlife, contact Animal Control.
• If you are bitten:
o Wash the bite thoroughly with soap and water.
o Seek medical attention.
o Contact Amador County Animal Control, so the wildlife can be tested.
• Contact Animal Control and your veterinarian if your pet was exposed to a skunk, bat, raccoon or other wildlife.
• If a bat is inside your home, do NOT let it out. Contact Animal Control for testing.
Rabies is a deadly disease that kills both animals and humans. The rabies virus is almost always fatal. The only treatment is prevention. In California, bats, skunks, raccoons and foxes are the most frequent carriers of rabies. For more information on rabies and pet vaccination, contact your veterinarian or Amador County Animal Control at (209) 223-6378.
Your family may not be together during a wildfire. Make plans today for how to stay in touch and be sure to test this plan. Get the America’s PrepareAthon! “How to Prepare for Wildfire” guide and more by visiting: http://1.usa.gov/1DCWSRT.
One of the most beautiful animals I have seen. This is Antonio Fernandini Guerrero with his harpy eagle he nursed back to health after it was shot. It is blind in one eye, and unfortunately cannot be released back in the wild.
If you would like to learn more about Antonio and his work with the Harpy eagle, please feel free to contact him. He works with raptors in general. My friend Cassandra Caroline Živka Suština is putting together a Go Fund Me campaign to help Antonio with meat costs for his eagles, and to hopefully start working on building a larger enclosure and flight runs for the eagles. Once the campaign is up and running, I will post it here.
P.S. This photo is genuine and not photoshopped.
This particular harpy eagle is a female, and about 20 pounds with a 6.5 foot wingspan.
Did you know?
Harpy Eagles are among the world’s largest and most powerful eagles. Their rear talons are about 3-4 inches long – the same size as a grizzly bear’s claws!
Like many other birds of prey, Harpy Eagles continue to bring fresh green twigs and branches to the nest after the chick has hatched. Some researchers think this helps keep insects and parasites away and provides a cooler environment for the nestling.
A female can weigh up to two times more than her mate.
Deforestation and shooting are the two main threats to the survival of Harpy Eagles.
Plumage: The harpy eagle has dark gray feathers with a white underside. A black band of plumage spans its neck and a fan of gray feathers crowns its head. Male and female plumage is identical.
Diet: A hunting carnivore and an apex predator, the harpy eagle preys primarily on tree-dwelling mammals like sloths, monkeys, and opossums. They will occasionally prey on other birds like macaws, and on reptiles like iguanas. Females generally target larger prey because of their size, leaving smaller prey for the males.
Habitat: The birds live in the rainforests of Central and South America. They prefer large expanses of uninterrupted forest and spend the majority of their time in the forest canopy. They are rarely seen flying over the canopy or in open spaces.
Geography: The harpy eagle is found primarily in South America, in countries like Brazil, Ecuador, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Colombia, Venezuela, Bolivia, Paraguay, Peru, and northeast Argentina. The species is also found in areas of Mexico and Central America, though the populations are far smaller.
Lifespan: The bird’s lifespan is believed to be 25-35 years.
Social Structure and Breeding: Harpy eagles mate for life. Large nests made of sticks and branches and lined with softer materials are built at least 90 feet from the ground in huge trees like the kapok tree, the Brazil nut tree, or the Cambara tree. The harpy couple often reuses the same nest over many years. The female lays two eggs, but once the first egg hatches, the remaining egg is ignored and will not hatch. Both parents spend all their time protecting and raising the chick until it fledges, usually within 6 or 7 months, though it returns to the nest over the next 6-10 months for an occasional free meal. A harpy pair will produce a chick every 2-4 years. Young harpy eagles reach sexual maturity between the ages of 4 and 5.
See more at: http://www.peregrinefund.org/explore-raptors-species/Harpy_Eagle#.dpuf
PawsPartners.org is an alliance formed between A-PAL Humane Society of Amador County and Tri County Wildlife Care, the latter serving native wildlife in Amador, Calaveras, and Eastern San Joaquin Counties. Since inception we have added the Shelter Partners volunteer group, who support our local Animal Control organization, and Amador County Animal Response Team (ACART).