The Anne Arundel County Department of Health is currently preparing themselves to begin the Raccoon Oral Rabies Vaccine Project for 2014. With help from the county with funding, the project is expected to place 85,000 baits across the county. The bait contains within it a vaccine to help vaccinate wild raccoons in the area from rabies. The goal of the project is to reduce the total number of rabid animals in the area, which would then reduce the number of humans and domestic pets exposed. This year’s project is slotted to take place on September 3rd, with the completion expected towards the end of September. The original project began during the October of 1998, with officials spreading the vaccination solely on the Annapolis Peninsula. In 2001, the Broadneck Peninsula was included in the project, with the entire county being included in 2003. The project continued until 2011, when efforts were forced to end due to the lack of funding. The county has shown a severe spike in rabies cases found since the project stopped, with only four cases reported in 2011 and thirty cases reported in 2013. There will be two different types of baits, distributed in two different ways, throughout the county this year with the project. One bait will resemble a small brick while the other will resemble a ketchup packet. Both baits will require the raccoon to bite into the object in order to become vaccinated. The baits will be distributed by hand and by helicopter. The Anne Arundel County Police helicopter will drop the baits in areas of the county that are less populated while teams with the health department will place the baits by hand in areas where raccoons will likely be found. Even with these vaccination efforts, there can still be chance that a raccoon could carry rabies. If you believe a rabid raccoon is living near your property, or you have seen the animal yourself, do not take matters into your own hands. Instead, call the professionals at Mid Atlantic Wildlife Control. Our technicians are trained in raccoon removal, even those with rabies. Our team is also trained on exclusion and barrier techniques that will prevent raccoons from entering your Anne Arundel County home. A raccoon with rabies will most likely be seen during the day, versus the evening hours when raccoons are normally active. The animal can seem disoriented and will be unable to walk properly. They could also appear aggressive and agitated. In need of services from Mid Atlantic Wildlife Control? Call us today at 443-417-3137, or visit our contact page. Our technicians are available, never hesitate to call. Follow Mid Atlantic Wildlife Control today on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.   Source: http://aahealth.org/programs/env-hlth/orv