A man fishing in Belarus has died after a beaver bit him on the thigh, severing an artery, as the man tried to take its picture.
The 60-year-old victim, who has not been identified, was reportedly on a fishing trip with two friends near Lake Shestakov in the Eastern European country of Belarus when they spied the beaver on the side of the road.
"It was early morning and already light when they saw a beaver by the road, which was unusual because beavers are nocturnal," Sergei Shtyk, the deputy head of the region's wildlife inspectorate, told the Telegraph
. "One of them went up to be photographed with it, and the animal attacked him and bit him twice, cutting an artery in his thigh, before running away."
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The man's friends tried to bandage him up, but he lost too much blood and died.
Eurasian beavers are common in Eastern Europe but rarely attack, Shtyk said. He says this beaver could have been rabid.
"People have lost fingers — that's the worst I've come across," he told the Telegraph. "The beaver is not normally aggressive, but it does have big teeth and immensely powerful jaws; it can cut down a tree three-feet wide."
Last month, a Russian man posted a video on YouTube (below) of a beaver attacking him near the country's Tver region. He was knocked down but escaped with no serious injuries.
Last year, a Boy Scout leader in upstate New York was attacked by a rabid beaver
while swimming in the Delaware River. He sustained bites to his arm, leg, buttock, torso, and hand, but fully recovered.
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