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Rabid Beaver Bites Swimmer At Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area


A swimmer cooling off at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area was bitten by a beaver that later tested postivie for rabies, according to park officials.

Few details were released by the park, other than that the swimmer was bitten Thursday afternoon in the Delaware River near the Eshback Access.

According to a park release, "(R)abies is a disease that kills both humans and animals and is most often transmitted through the bites of infected animals. Any mammal can become infected with rabies. Not all sick animals have rabies; however, rabies should be considered in any case where an animal is acting aggressively for no apparent reason (i.e., is not protecting young, food sources, or territory) or is confused and not afraid of humans. At this time, it is unknown if other animals in the park are affected.

"If you see sick or dead wildlife, do not approach or touch them and notify a park employee or call the park’s 24-hour emergency communications center at (570) 426-2457. Visitors should keep pets vaccinated and on a leash at all times and notify park staff if contact with wildlife occurs or is suspected. Anyone who may have had contact with or was bitten or attacked by a wild animal in the park is also asked to call the number above to report the incident. Visitors are reminded to observe and appreciate wildlife from a distance."

Delaware Water Gap officials said more information surrounding the incident would be released as it becomes available.

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