Rabid giant beaver attacks Georgia girl swimming in lake


GAINESVILLE, Ga. — A rabid beaver bit a girl while she was swimming in a northeast Georgia lake, local media reported.

Kevin Beucker, Hall County Animal Control field supervisor, told WDUN-AM that the beaver bit the girl Saturday while she was swimming on private property on the north end of Lake Lanier, near Gainesville.

The girl’s father beat the beaver to death, Beucker said.

Don McGowan, supervisor of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife Resources, he told WSB-TV that a responding ranger described the animal as «the biggest beaver I’ve ever seen.» The warden estimated him at 50 or 55 pounds (23 or 25 kilograms), McGowan said.

The beaver later tested positive for rabies at a state laboratory.

«Once the rabies virus gets into the brain of the animal, in this case, a beaver, they just act crazy,» McGowan said.

Hall County officials posted signs warning people about rabies. They are asking nearby residents to be on the lookout for abnormally acting animals and urging them to vaccinate pets against the viral disease.

People attacked by a rabid animal usually undergo a series of injections to prevent the disease from killing them.

State wildlife biologists said beaver attacks are rare. They said the last they can remember in Lake Lanier was 13 years ago.

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