Sat, Feb 24, 2018 - Page 4 News List

Dead Reeve’s muntjacs rabies-free, bureau says

By Jonathan Chin  /  Staff writer, with CNA

The Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine on Thursday said that nine dead Reeve’s muntjacs found during the Lunar New Year holiday in Yilan County’s mountainous areas did not have rabies.

The bureau received a public tipoff about the dead muntjacs in Yilan’s Yuanshan Township (員山), Deputy Director-General Shih Tai-hua (施泰華) said.

The bureau recalled several personnel from their vacation to investigate and found seven dead muntjacs, three of which were in a state of severe decomposition and were buried immediately, he said.

Although the four other carcasses were in various stages of decomposition, the Animal Health Research Institute’s laboratory was able to examine them and found that they did not have rabies, he said.

“The lab results refuted media reports that the muntjacs might have been attacked by rabid ferret-badgers,” he said.

To date, no rabid ferret-badgers have been found in Yilan and the spread of rabid badgers have not reached north of Hualien or south of Taichung, bureau Director-General Feng Hai-tung (馮海東) said.

Animals with rabies have been found in 81 districts and townships spread over nine of the nation’s cities and counties, but Yilan County is not one of them, the bureau said.

Rabies has only been found in the badger population and there have been no reported incidences of muntjacs with rabies, the bureau said.

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