Ontario Resuming Rabies Vaccination Bait Drops
Bait Vaccines to be Dropped in Parts of Southwestern Ontario
Ontario is actively responding to the 76 cases of confirmed rabies in parts of southwestern Ontario by resuming rabies vaccination bait drops in those areas beginning April 1.
During April, rabies vaccine baiting will be taking place in the Stratford and Golden Horseshoe areas by:
- Helicopter, beginning April 1
- Hand, beginning April 4
- Twin otter plane, for the first half of April.
Hand baiting is expected to continue into the summer months, focusing on urban areas where aircraft operations are restricted.
Baiting plans will be revised as needed, based on weather and the potential discovery of additional rabies locations.
Annual baiting will again take place in the Golden Horseshoe, Stratford, Niagara and St. Lawrence areas in late August or early September.
The flavoured baits immunize most skunks, foxes and raccoons that eat them. Baits are small and khaki green, with a toll-free rabies hotline number stamped on them. If you see baits, please do not disturb them.
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is responsible for wildlife rabies research and management programs in Ontario. This includes distribution of vaccine baits. Ontario's bait drop program is one of the most successful rabies control programs in North America.
- The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is working with municipal public health services, local animal control services, First Nations, trappers, and animal rehabilitators to capture and test raccoons and other wildlife that are behaving strangely in key areas.
- The public should not trap, transport or feed wildlife. A number of provincial ministries offer assistance to the public in the case of exposure to rabies – whether through human contact or through pet or domestic animal contact.
- Exposure to a bait is not harmful to people or pets. However, if a person or a pet comes in contact with the vaccine in the bait, contacting a doctor or veterinarian as a precaution is recommended.