Rabbit concern

A BLEARY woman has called on Craigavon Council to erect signs in Oxford Island to warn the public of an outbreak of myxomatosis.

Helen McGrath (48) contacted the ‘MAIL’ earlier this week to express her “distress” after she saw a rabbit in the nature reserve nearing death. She said the animal had been infected with the myxomatosis virus.

She said: “The poor thing was completely blind, and it even had puss running out of its eyes. I knew then it was myxomatosis.

“I was absolutely horrified. I didn’t think the disease was still prevalant. I couldn’t stop imaging what that poor rabbit was going through.”

She said: “I told the people in the Discovery Centre they should put up signs warning people, especially children, not to go near the rabbits.

Craigavon Borough Council has erected public information signs in reception at Lough Neagh Discovery Centre, Kinnego Marina and Waterside House to keep visitors and the general public up to date on the situation.

A spokesman said: “We are also actively monitoring the situation and removing the dead rabbits regularly throughout each day which will help reduce the incidence of infection.

“Visitors to the island should note that this disease is not infectious to humans or to any other animal so it is completely safe to come and spend time at Oxford Island as usual”