Regional: Beaver attacks swimmers in Killingly

Killingly — Swimmers and boaters are being warned to stay out of the waters of the Quinebaug River in the vicinity of the Route 101 bridge on the Pomfret/Killingly town line after two people suffered injuries there Monday evening when they were apparently attacked by a beaver, state officials said.

Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) Environmental Conservation (EnCon) Police say a Danielson man and woman were swimming in the water there just before 7 p.m. when they were bitten by an animal that appeared to be a beaver. The 20-year-old man and 19-year old woman made their way to Day Kimball Hospital, Putnam, where they both received stitches for their wounds.

EnCon Police launched a search for the animal. They did encounter a beaver exhibiting aggressive behavior near the bridge on Route 101, but they were unable to capture the animal.

“There have been occasional cases of a healthy beaver being aggressive toward humans,” states a DEEP press release. “There have also been a few cases when tests have shown a beaver to be infected with rabies. It is unclear if the beaver in the Quinebaug was healthy or had rabies.”

EnCon Police say beaver do not appear to be making their home in the immediate area where the attack took place Monday evening. They did say there was a beaver den and also some beavers denning in the bank of the river somewhat to the south of that location.