Saturday, October 25, 2014

Sculptures by the Sea and more on Lyssavirus

The Sculptures by the Sea complement the landscape.
I don’t know much about art, but I know I like public outdoor art exhibitions where dogs are welcome. And it turns out that Sculptures by the Sea is the world’s largest public outdoor art exhibition. So we travelled to Bondi Beach to view the sculptures there.

Phil wasn't sure about this one (Thomas Quale's "Comenavadrink and waddayalookinat".
Even without sculptures, the Bondi to Tamarama walk is stunning, especially early in the morning. And the thing we’ve discovered about sculptures is that once you start looking at them, every structure you come across on the bath seems like a sculpture. A simple rubbish bin between artworks prompts the question “is this a sculpture? What does it mean?”

Sculpture by Julie Collins and Derek John, "Evidence based research: crossing the line".
Unlike just about every other art exhibition I’ve been to, at Sculptures by the Sea, you don’t have to cloak your bag, photographs are encouraged and touching of works (at least some of them) expected.

Kerrie Argent's work, "Overconsumption" is meticulously constructed from bottle tops.

If you are in Sydney this weekend and looking for something nice to do, it’s well worth a visit – though I strongly recommend public transport or car pooling.
More information here.

Harrie Fisher, "Which way forward?"
In other news we were asked a question by Judy G about what to do if an animal is bitten or scratched by a bat. The NT’s Chief Veterinary Officer released information this week about Australian Bat Lyssavirus (ABL) being detected in the Northern Territory. I think the best resource (though NSW-centric) is the Department of Primary Industry’s guidelines (click here to view the PDF).

(One thing I found interesting is that the key differential diagnosis for bats showing clinical signs associated with ABL – seizures, tremors, paralysis, paresis, weakness, overt aggression, ground-dwelling or acting unusually – are rat lungworm and head trauma. Another reason for vets to be aware of rat lungworm infection).

Essentially if an animal is bitten or scratched by a bat, the bat – where possible – should be submitted for testing. If the body is NOT available for testing, vaccination of the animal against rabies is recommended. This is done under a permit system. The animal is also monitored for two years.

If an animal is bitten or scratched and the bat tests NEGATIVE, vaccination is not required. More details in the guidelines here. Excellent question!