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Deadly rabbit disease found in Palm Springs; 1st-time disease is found in CA
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife announced that a rabbit found dead in Palm Springs tested positive for Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease. The disease does not affect humans or other animals, but it is highly contagious and often lethal to both wild and domestic rabbits
It's the first time the disease has been ever been found in California, according to CDFW officials.
Officials say they found the black-tailed jackrabbit among 10 other dead rabbits at a property in Palm Springs.
Officials worry that the disease could significantly impact wild rabbit populations in California, particularly endangered species, as all rabbit, jackrabbit, hare and pika species are likely susceptible.
"Unfortunately, we may also see impacts to species that depend on rabbits for food, as rabbits are a common prey species for many predators," said CDFW Senior Wildlife Veterinarian Deana Clifford.