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Dead beaver in RMNP tests positive for tularemia

Tularemia was also detected in the Lily Lake area of the park back in 2015
Credit: THINKSTOCK
A Spring view of Lily Lake, with Mt. Meeker (left, 13,911 ft) and Longs Peak (right, 14,255 ft) rising high in background, in Rocky Mountain National Park, Estes Park, Colorado, USA.

Rocky Mountain National Park — A dead beaver found in the Lily Lake area of Rocky Mountain National Park has tested positive for tularemia, an uncommon but serious infectious disease, Kyle Patterson with RMNP said in a release.

Tularemia is often spread through insects and ticks or by handling infected or dead animals, like rabbits, beavers and other rodents.

The disease can also be spread to humans and can cause serious symptoms like fever, chills, joint pain, muscle aches and chest pain. In early stages, it can be successfully treated with antibiotics.

Tips on preventing infection include using insect repellent, washing hands, and giving wildlife space.

Tularemia was also detected in the Lily Lake area in 2015, Patterson said.

In June, a rabbit found near South Table Mountain Park in Jefferson County died from tularemia. That was the first reported animal case of the disease in Colorado this year.

Though tularemia is rare in Colorado, there are about 200 human cases of the disease in the U.S. each year.

For more information about the disease, click or tap here.