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What is bever fever?

Dr. Peter W. Pappas pappas.3 at osu.edu
Thu Apr 22 05:01:08 EST 1999

Giardiasis (the disease caused by Giardia lamblia) is commonly referred to
as "beaver fever," since some believe that beavers serve as a reservoir for
this parasite.  The parasite is transmitted via fecal material, not urine,
and it can cause severe gastrointestinal problems in humans.  "Do not drink
the water" is probably good advice, but this should include any water of
unknown origin since the parasite is ubiquitous.

James Mahaffy wrote in message <371E9897.35ECFE9D at dordt.edu>...
>I asked students in a non major class to post to an internal newsgroup
>and one of them asked about bever fever in Canada.  It sounds a bit like
>Giardia or is there something else that humans tend to pick up from
>If someone knows I would like to post the response back to the class.
>James Mahaffy (mahaffy at dordt.edu)      Phone: 712 722-6279
>Biology Department                     FAX :  712 722-1198
>Dordt College, Sioux Center IA 51250
>bcc to student.
>Around where I live in Canada when we go swimming we are sometimes told
>not to swim in ponds or small lakes that beavers have been in, they tell
>us that we'll get "beaver fever" if we accidently drink the water.  And
>last year our city had a "beaver fever" epidemic and no one who lived in
>town could drink their water.  They told us it was from beaver's urine,
>and it made people sick.  People got diarrhea and very upset stomachs.
>What is this really and are there more causes than just beaver urine?
>A Student in biology

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