In a rare incident, a beaver bit a man to death in Belarus as he was attempting to take the animal's photograph.
The victim was on a fishing trip with two friends when he stopped to snap a photo of a nearby beaver, according to Sky News. The beaver attacked the man, biting him on the thigh and severing an important artery, causing him to bleed to death.
The man, whose name was not given, reached medics 30 minutes after the attack, but was pronounced dead upon arrival, according to Russian news agency RIA Novosti, citing local media reports.
Sergei Shilinchuk, deputy head of the environmental protection committee for the city of Brest, told The Telegraph that he had never heard of a beaver killing a man before in the region.
"People have lost fingers – that's the worst I've come across," Shilinchuk said. "The beaver is not normally aggressive, but it does have big teeth and immensely powerful jaws; it can cut down a tree three feet wide."
Shilinchuk added that the animal could have been rabid, or perhaps young and attempting to stake its claim to new territory.
Technically rodents, beavers are generally herbivores and are more comfortable in water than on land. According to National Geographic, they feed on leaves, bark, twigs, roots and aquatic plants.
But beavers are certainly capable of aggression, as evidenced by a recently unearthed video of the mammal attacking a man in Russia.
Meanwhile, there were several reported cases of rabid beavers attacking Americans in 2012, including two in Fairfax County, Va., within the span of a week.
According to experts, only a rabid beaver is a threat to a human. A healthy beaver will rarely attack a human.
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