(09/27/2001)
Most of the 800,000 fishmeal encrusted rabies vaccine baits have been dropped to the earth across a swath in West Virginia, after the aircraft was grounded following the attack on America. The fly-overs continued last week in Calhoun, Clay, Braxton, Roane and Gilmer, among others.

The drops are continuing this week in southern counties. The vaccine has been successful in preventing the spread of rabies, and is mostly directed toward raccoons which carries a fast-spreading strain of the disease. Most of the counties receiving the drops are on the edge of the slow-moving rabies outbreak in West Virginia.

State Agricultural Commissioner Gus Douglas said 3,500 southern raccoons were imported to Pendleton and Pocahontas counties in the 1970's, which jump-started the rabies strain to the area. "This shows you how you can get in trouble importing non-native species to the area," he said.


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