If you are walking or hiking this weekend in Erie County, you might see small green pods. Whatever you do, don't touch them.

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These pods are part of Erie County's wildlife vaccination program for rabies. The pods will be dropped off via helicopter, airplane, and ground distribution. According to Erie County's Health Department website, helicopters will drop bait to suburban towns and villages and open areas of the city of Buffalo from July 31 through August 4. Fixed-wing aircraft will distribute vaccine packets to rural areas between August 17 and August 20.

Ground and hand-baiting started this past Wednesday in more densely populated urban areas.

Officials with the county ask you to leave the pods alone if possible. If you do come into contact with one, you are asked to call the NYSDOH Rabies Information Line (888) 574-6656 with questions or concerns

Officials said that most pods will be eaten within four days of being dropped and that most of the pods are gone within seven days. Any pods not eaten by wildlife will naturally dissolve.

If you must move a pod for any reason, you should wear plastic gloves or use a paper towel when handling the pod. Damaged pods can be put into your garage can while pods that are still intact should be placed in a wooded area so the wildlife can eat them.

The pods are slightly bigger than a quarter.

Most of the suburbs in Erie County will be covered by helicopters, so you may notice a lot more helicopter traffic over the next couple of weeks.

To learn more about the pods and the county's rabies vaccination program you can click HERE


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