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A child in Idaho has tested positive for the disease also known as bubonic plague.
Disturbingly, officials do not know how the unidentified boy, a resident of Elmore County the area around Mountain Home, caught the plague. They think the boy was bitten by a rodent at home or on a trip to Oregon, The Oregonian reported. Ground squirrels in Elmore County also tested positive for plague in 2015 and 2016.
The plague is still a very deadly disease; around 200 people died of an outbreak in Madagascar in 2017, Newsweek reported. About 11% of Americans who catch bubonic plague die from it the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) calculated.
Is the Black Death Back?
The bacteria that causes bubonic plague, Yersinia pestis is believed to be the responsible for the greatest pandemic in human history the Black Death.
The Black Death killed around 25 million people in Europe between 1347 and 1357. Historians believe the Black Death wiped out half the population of England and depopulated most villages. It took Europe’s population 200 years to recover from the Black Death.
Scientists are unsure what caused the Black Death. The truth is, most researchers blame Yersinia pestis, but some think an unidentified virus was the real cause.
The Black Plague Has Changed All Of History
History also teaches us that the plague can return at any time. There were three major outbreaks of the plague in history:
The Justinian Plague between 541 and 750 AD killed around 25 million people. As a matter of fact, the plague so weakened the Roman or Byzantine Empire, that most of its territory was easily overrun by Arab invaders. The second major plague outbreak was the Black Death.
The Modern Plague in China killed around 10 million people between the 1860s and the 1890s. This plague spread to port cities around the world including those in the Western US via steamships.
The Modern Plague may have changed history; it preceded the Chinese Revolution of 1911. That revolution was followed by nearly 40 years of civil war that ended with the formation of the Marxist, People’s Republic of China in 1949.
How to Protect Your Family from the Plague
Here are a few ways that you can protect your family from the Plague:
• The plague is spread by rodents. You can keep rodents away by eliminating rodent habitat; including brush, rock piles of garbage and junk and cluttered firewood, from your property.
• Make sure your home, vehicles, place of business and outbuildings are rodent proof.
• First, before handling rodents, always wear gloves.
• Make sure rodents in traps are dead before handling them.
• In areas where plague has been reported be sure t use extra insect repellent
• Make sure that your pets are wearing flea collars.
• Wash pets with flea-killed shampoo if the plague is reported in your area.
• Do not let pets roam free.
• Keep pets off furniture if the plague is reported in your area
• Take sick pets to the vet.
In conclusion, use extreme caution in areas where the plague has been reported. Bubonic plague takes 3-5 days to incubate and another 3-5 days before it kills 80% of the people who become infected.