Otter that bit two hikers is found, rabies ruled out
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Otter that bit two hikers is found, rabies ruled out

Galilee hiking trail reopened after officials determine animal escaped petting farm, likely attacked travelers since it’s used to getting food from humans

Illustrative: In this January 15, 2010, file photo, a sea otter is seen in Morro Bay, California. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, file)
Illustrative: In this January 15, 2010, file photo, a sea otter is seen in Morro Bay, California. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, file)

A hiking trail in northern Israel where an otter bit two hikers Saturday will be reopened after rabies concerns were ruled out, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority said Sunday.

The Ein Divsha trail in the Upper Galilee had been closed off to visitors and the hikers who were bitten had been instructed to inoculate themselves against rabies.

Shmulik Yadov, of the Society for Protection of Nature in Israel’s mammal center, had told Walla news that because otter attacks are out of the ordinary, rabies was a concern.

But the otter has been found and rabies was ruled out, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority said Sunday, recommending that the Upper Galilee Regional Council reopen the trail.

An examination found that the otter has an electronic chip and had escaped a petting farm a week ago in the nearby Kibbutz Shamir.

It likely bit the hikers since it was hungry and was used to getting its food from humans.

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