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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee Department of Health is working to prevent the spread of rabies by raccoons through the distribution of vaccine packets coated with fishmeal.

According to the department, the packets will be distributed by helicopter and airplane between Oct. 3 and Oct. 20. The baiting program takes place in cooperation with the U.S. Agriculture Department along Tennessee’s borders with Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia.

The vaccine products are safe, but the USDA Wildlife Services program says residents should instruct children to leave bait alone. Baits also should be removed from where a pet could eat them. Using gloves or a towel, residents should toss them into a wooded or fencerow area.

While there is no harm in touching undamaged baits, they have a strong fishmeal smell.