- Naturally foxes run away if people spot them. But in this scenario, they seem to chase people and attack
By Chaturanga Samarawickrama
The Wildlife Department yesterday cautioned people in Millaniya, Kalutara of rabies infected fox attacks, Department of Wildlife Conservation Director (Health) Dr. Tharaka Prasad said at a media briefing.
He requested the people not to walk alone on roads, not to send children to school alone and not to walk at night for at least two weeks to prevent rabies-infected fox attacks.
“Foxes are active till 10.00 a.m from the night before. People are strictly instructed not to chase foxes and to inform the Department via hot-line 1992 if spotted one,” he said.
“The first incident of rabies infection was reported on June 6 after a pack of dogs were bitten by a rabies-infected dog. By June 18, all domestic dogs in the area were vaccinated. On June 26 and July 22 a Buffalo and a cow were found with severe symptoms and abnormal behaviour and later they were found dead,” Dr. Prasad said.
Later, a person was found bitten by a fox on July 28 and the man died on August 17. One boy was also claimed that he was bitten by a fox,” he said.
“Fox attacks take place due to misunderstandings of their behaviour. Naturally, foxen used to run away if people spot them. But in this scenario, they seem to chase people and attack them. These foxes have been infected with rabies,” he said.
Therefore, the Wildlife Department requested the people in the area to contact the Department via the hotline 1992 to bring the situation under control.
“If anyone finds a dead fox, the Department requested the people to bring its head to the Medical Research Institute for easy diagnosis,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Transport Minister C. B. Rathnayake said the peacock population has dramatically increased in Millaniya area and foxen used to come in to hunt them.