Here Come the Vampires

August 13, 2011

When I reported, as an afterthought, on the expanding range of brown recluse spiders under climate change, it turned into a very popular, viral post.  Something about sea level rise and desertification doesn’t quite hit home as well as something that could crawl up  your leg.

Now, CDC tells us, Vampire Bats may be next. (see ABC news video here)

Huffington Post:

U.S. health authorities have announced the first death by a vampire bat in the United States.

According to the AFP, on July 15, 2010, a 19-year-old man was bitten by a vampire bat in Michoacan, Mexico. Ten days later, the migrant farm worker left for the U.S. to pick sugar cane at a Louisiana plantation. He fell sick, presenting symptoms of fatigue, shoulder pain, numbness in his left hand and a drooping left eye.

MSNBC.com writes, “Despite ‘True Blood’s’ Louisiana setting, nobody thought of vampire bats because there are no vampire bats in the United States outside of zoos. But the young man had only just arrived in the United States.” Tests later confirmed that he was infected with rabies.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) recently wrote, “This case represents the first reported human death from a vampire bat rabies virus variant in the United States.” According to the CDC, the victim had a notably aggressive form of rabies.

According to the CDC:

Although vampire bats currently are found only in Latin America, research suggests that the range of these bats might be expanding as a result of changes in climate (6).

Expansion of vampire bats into the United States likely would lead to increased bat exposures to both humans and animals (including domestic livestock and wildlife species) and substantially alter rabies virus dynamics and ecology in the southern United States.

3 Responses to “Here Come the Vampires”

  1. Alteredstory Says:

    I gotta say, that article is more or less par for the course with Huffington Post headlines/reporting.

    The guy got bit well within their range, and just happened to die after he got back to the US.

    While it’s likely that vampire bats will move north, this story has no actual connection to that. The article and headline seem to be an attempt to mislead readers for the sake of more hits.


  2. First it’s ‘everybody out of the the water’ because of our gelatinous overlords. Then we have to stay away from the wood pile and live in fear even in our homes because of the advance of the arachnids. Now it’s not even safe to wander outside at dusk?!?

    WHAT NEXT!?! Will “Mant” and other such nuclear abominations become the next wave of terror?

    Stay tuned…

    Oh, and I don’t think the HuffPost article is sensationalizing anything beyond reason. Climate Change will enlarge or expand disease vectors – even the human carried diseases as folks relocate to find a better life. I hear relief agencies are airlifting vaccinations into Dadaab camp.

    Galen

  3. livinginabox Says:

    It would be ironic if the vampires developed a taste for rabid Tea-Party types.


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