Oops! Hunter’s Bear Feast Ends With Trichinosis Infection

This one's totally undercooked.
This one's totally undercooked. Photo: LongHornDave via Flickr

Hunting seasons may be opening up across this great land of ours, but take caution before dishing up your fresh-kill game. Sean Sullivan, a hearty 32-year-old outdoorsman who lives and works in Alaska, recently learned the hard way just how important it is to cook the spoils from the hunt to at least 160 degrees. Six weeks after capping, and subsequently cooking and eating a six-foot black bear that was trying to break into his cabin, he began experiencing pain in his back and legs. Then: high fever, upset stomach, and sensitivity to light and sound. That’s all before his wife found him in the bathtub one night, hallucinating and blabbering about a broken-down snow machine. Turns out that those black-bear chops he enjoyed weeks before had stricken him with trichinosis — as in larvae from the parasitic trichinella, which were reproducing in his body and embedding their offspring deep within his muscle tissue. Luckily, Sullivan recovered and plans to hang the bear’s hide on his wall. [Anchorage Daily News via McClatchy]