Deadly seal plague alarm called off

Mysterious seals that washed up on Anholt beach died from bacteria, the autopsy reveals

If you're heading across Funen, expect huge delays (photo: iStock)
July 17th, 2014 8:47 am| by admin
facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail

It was a bacterial infection, not the recurrence of a deadly plague in 2002  that killed nearly 4,000 seals, which has resulted in over 100 of the animals washing up on the beaches of the island of Anholt over the last two weeks.

Cause of death unsealed
Mariann Chriéll, a veterinarian at DTU, told Jyllands-Posten that her team have dissected four of the seals and revealed that a bacterial infection has caused weak individuals to develop an acute and eventually terminal pneumonia.

"The seals get so much blood in their lungs and coming out of their noses that it almost flows over," she said.

No second plague 
As gruesome as it may sound, a seal plague similar to the one 12 years ago would be much more alarming.

"This bacteria primarily attacks weakened and sensitive animals, but all seals can contract the plague," said Chriéll.

"And it's been so long since the last outbreak that very few remain immune."

Seals are particularly vulnerable to infection at this time of year because they tend to gather on land and lie close to one another. 

If you're heading across Funen, expect huge delays (photo: iStock)
Huge train delays across Funen
Train services across western Funen between Odense and Fredericia have craw...
Birthday gift: Queen Margarethe gets her own exhibtion (Photo: Danish Museum of National History)
Museums corner: Reign supreme: first the queen, then the tweens, next the machines
Margrethe II might have something to say about the line-up this month. For ...
Noma unseated from its number one position (photo: Antissimo)
World’s 50 Best Restaurants: Noma falls to third place
After spending four of the last five years in first place, Noma has droppe...
EADP have developed a spacecraft capable of deflecting an asteroid with very short warning time (photo: Urhixidur)
Armaged some funding! Danish NGO collecting funds for asteroid protection
The Danish NGO, the Emergency Asteroid Defence Project (EADP), is currently...
The pharoahe is ready to kill it with his rhymes (Photo: Krik Barvender)
Early-June music: In the hands of the pharoahe
Pharoahe Monch Wed 3 June, 22:00; Pumpehuset; 200kr Pharoahe Monch, a 42-...
More Copenhageners are ready to spend the big bucks on their holiday (photo: iStock)
Copenhageners travelling the most this summer
When it comes to forking out for a holiday somewhere, Copenhageners have th...