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Sullivan among target counties for raccoon rabies vaccines

staff report • May 5, 2013 at 7:37 PM

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has been informed that the United States Department of Agriculture will begin distributing an oral rabies vaccine for wild raccoons in selected areas in the Southeast, including 15 counties in East Tennessee.

The goal of the program is to stop the spread of the raccoon variant rabies in Tennessee.

The oral rabies vaccine is placed inside a fishmeal block or coated with fishmeal. The block and/or the coating is made with fishmeal and oil that is known to attract raccoons. Raccoons that eat the vaccine-laced bait will become immune to rabies.

The vaccine will be distributed by ground crews and from fixed wing aircraft.

Depending on the weather, the project is scheduled to begin on Oct. 2 and conclude in 16 days. The target area will include portions of Bradley, Hamilton, Marion, McMinn, Meigs, Monroe, Polk, Carter, Cocke, Greene, Hamblen, Hawkins, Sullivan, Unicoi and Washington counties.

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