- Associated Press - Thursday, September 1, 2016

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - The New Mexico Department of Health is reporting the third human plague case in the state this year.

They say a 67-year-old Bernalillo County man was hospitalized but now is recovering at home.

The illness likely was caused by a bite the man sustained from a wild prairie dog from Santa Fe County.

Confirmatory testing was performed at the Department’s Scientific Laboratory Division.

Plague is a bacterial disease that cycles between rodents and their fleas and is generally transmitted to humans through the bites of infected fleas.

It can also be transmitted by direct contact with infected animals, including rodents, certain wildlife and pets.

Last year, New Mexico had four human plague cases with one death.

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