Joy Greenwald, Townsquare Media
Joy Greenwald, Townsquare Media

The Wyoming Game and Fish Department is reminding hunters to be aware of tularemia this fall.

The disease has been unusually active in Wyoming this year, with 16 human cases, including one death, being documented so far.

"The main thing that we certainly do recommend for hunters is to wear gloves," said State Wildlife Veterinarian Dr. Mary Wood. "Just wear gloves whenever you're handling and field dressing any harvested animal. Cook your meat thoroughly. Avoid harvesting any wildlife that appear sick, try and harvest those that look healthy. Beyond that, certainly when you're out in the field and when you come back in be sure to check yourself and your dog for ticks."

Tularemia is generally a disease of rabbits and rodents, but it can be transmitted to humans and animals.

"Certainly one of the main methods of transmission is through blood feeding arthropods," said Dr. Wood. "Usually when you have your first hard frost that does drop off your insect population and the risk of transmission is much, much lower at that time."

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