A Texas Rancher and his health has drawn the attention of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It was reported last week that the rancher has come down with an infection of anthrax, which is extremely rare.

The rancher is alive and is recovering from the infection which investigators believe happened after the rancher butchered and then consumed a dead lamb that had died on his property.

According to USNews.com, the rancher found the dead lamb and butchered it. On New Year's Day, the rancher contacted his doctor about infected skin wounds. By January 4th, the man had gone to the hospital with a high fever, "scabrous lesion on his right wrist and a swollen right arm complete with blistered lesions".

Testing done confirmed B. anthracis DNA the CDC confirmed to USNews.com and after extensive treatment the man was discharged on January 12.

According to USNews.com, the ranch where the dead animal was found is near an area called the "Anthrax Triangle".

"The patient and another person seasoned and cooked the meat; the well-cooked meat was then consumed at a meal with three other persons," the investigators said, but only the man who butchered the lamb became ill.

That suggests direct contact between the deceased animal and the man's skin as the mode of transmission. In this case and prior human anthrax cases recorded in the same area of Texas, "the patients reported direct skin exposure to animal carcasses, emphasizing the importance of avoiding processing carcasses of animals that unexpectedly die of unknown causes in this region regardless of the season," the investigators said.

Even though tests of the leftover cooked and frozen meat did not show up as positive, the CDC says that there is no safe way to prepare meat that died from anthrax. Anthrax infections are not common in the winter due to low temperatures, but since Texas had a warmer winter, anthrax could have remained active.

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