Aww Nuts: Squirrel in Colorado Tests Positive for Bubonic Plague Because 2020

Remember a week ago when news sites picked up on the fact that the pneumonic and Bubonic plagues had reemerged in Africa? It was kind of scary but, as with most things, if it wasn’t happening in America, none of us really cared? Well, the Bubonic plague (otherwise known as the Black Death back in the 14th century) has come to America, more specifically Colorado. The good news is, it’s only a squirrel that has tested positive for the disease. The bad news is, the Black Death can spread, well, like the plague.

Officials from Jefferson County Public Health (JCPH) said in a statement released to the public that “plague is an infectious disease caused by the bacteria Yersinia pestis, and can be contracted by humans and household animals if proper precautions are not taken. Symptoms of plague may include sudden onset of high fever, chills, headache, nausea, and extreme pain and swelling of lymph nodes, occurring within two to seven days after exposure. Plague can be effectively treated with antibiotics when diagnosed early. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should consult a physician.”

So, yeah. Adding to the list of COVID-19, Australia burning, Kobe’s death, Weinstein, and Tiger King and Murder Hornets (oh my), an idiot for a president, racism, child sex trafficking, police brutality, aliens, Ebola, masks, people complaining about masks and Kanye being Kanye, we can now add “The Black fucking Death” to our 2020 Bingo card.

National Geographic acknowledged that “arguably the most infamous plague outbreak was the so-called Black Death, a multi-century pandemic that swept through Asia and Europe. It was believed to start in China in 1334, spreading along trade routes and reaching Europe via Sicilian ports in the late 1340s. The plague killed an estimated 25 million people, almost a third of the continent’s population. The Black Death lingered on for centuries, particularly in cities. Outbreaks included the Great Plague of London (1665-66), in which 70,000 residents died.”

But, that was years ago. The CDC (Center for Disease Control) says there’s only an average of seven human plague cases each year, and the WHO (World Health Organization) says that the mortality rate for those afflicted is between 8-10 percent.

So, as has become our mantra the year, we can at least safely say that “the flu has killed more people.”

Cover Photo: Picture Alliance via Getty Images

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