Wednesday, August 17, 2005

It's raining small, khaki-green cubes of fat and wax in London

Children soon to be at risk in London Ontario - the overseers of the region justify these droppings with reference to protecting the population against a rare threat. It has a lot to do with hockey and the memorial cup too - Londoners will never live that victory down.
Hundreds of thousands of vaccine-laced baits will be dropped over a wide area of rural Southwestern Ontario this fall, part of a provincial effort to control rabies.

The 465,000 vaccine baits -- small, khaki-green cubes of fat and wax -- will be dropped from Ministry of Natural Resources aircraft starting in the third week in September.

The baits control rabies in Southwestern Ontario's prolific red fox population and stop the spread of the potentially deadly disease.


Ontario was once known as North America's rabies capital because of the large number of rabid animals reported.

But since 1994, when the bait program began in the region, the incidence of fox rabies has fallen 95 per cent, said Peter Bachmann, a senior technician with the ministry's rabies unit.


The last human case of rabies in Ontario was in 1967 in Ottawa, but the danger of new cases persists.
So why isn't the Ministry targeting city hall with those transfat rabies cubes?

I've been away. I haven't been reading the news. Clearly this has to do with salivary cotinine concentration.


Kyla said...

Did that say a 95% reduction in the incidence of rabies after vaccine drops? Wonder how all the anti-vaccine extremists explain that one?

Dr Kyla

MapMaster said...

Vaccination of people should remain a choice instead of a policy; its merits or failings may be contestable to many. However, foxes aren't people, and with a 95% reduction in the incidence of rabies, I'm not opposed to this technique at all. I wonder about the stated motivation for the drops, though, if no human case of rabies has occurred in Ontario since 1967. That seems lazy — a better justification could be the danger to livestock and rural pets.