in ,

The yuck factor: Small game

Image Via: Alberta Fish and Wildlife

Fleas

Most coyotes, foxes and wolves, as well as other species of small game, are host to fleas that can, and will, bite humans. Generally, these fleas don’t stay on people very long, but the bites are particularly itchy and may require medication. On rare occasions, fleas can also transmit infectious diseases, such as plague, to humans. A greater risk, though, is having the fleas infect household pets. Experienced trappers and hunters place canid carcasses in large garbage bags and spray them down with insecticide to kill fleas before skinning.

Sarcoptic Mange

Hunters sometimes find these pea-sized blisters, or cysts, in the connective tissue of the body cavity or on the surface of organs in hares and rabbits. These are actually the larvae of a tapeworm that lives in the intestines of many carnivores, including coyotes, foxes, bobcats, lynx and even domestic cats and dogs. Neither rabbits nor carnivores suffer any ill effects from harbouring this common parasite and, since it’s not infectious to people, there’s no risk in handling or eating infected animals.

Rabbit Blisters

Hunters sometimes find these pea-sized blisters, or cysts, in the connective tissue of the body cavity or on the surface of organs in hares and rabbits. These are actually the larvae of a tapeworm that lives in the intestines of many carnivores, including coyotes, foxes, bobcats, lynx and even domestic cats and dogs. Neither rabbits nor carnivores suffer any ill effects from harbouring this common parasite and, since it’s not infectious to people, there’s no risk in handling or eating infected animals.

Alberta Fish and Wildlife
Alberta Fish and Wildlife

Ken Bailey

Ken Bailey

An all-around hunter, Ken Bailey enjoys pursuing waterfowl the most. Based in Edmonton, Outdoor Canada's longtime hunting editor Ken Bailey has hunted every major Canadian game animal, in every corner of the country. For many years, he’s shared his deep knowledge of game behaviour, and wide expertise with all manner of firearms with OC's readers. His work has been recognized numerous times by both the Outdoor Writers of Canada and the National Magazine Awards. Ken is a committed conservationist, dedicated to habitat preservation, sustainable harvests, and passing along our hunting heritage to the next generation. He's also an avid fly fisherman, and a pretty darn good game chef.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading…

0

Comments