Bubonic Plague Caused By Gerbils, Not Rats

February 24, 2015 8:03 AM

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The bubonic plague was not caused by rats. According to a new study published recently in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, despite what is commonly believed, diseased-infested rat reservoirs were reportedly not the main cause of the outbreaks of the bubonic plague or “Black Death” pandemic across medieval Europe from the mid-13 to 1800s.

A group of scientific researchers headed by Niles Stenseth of the University of Oslo’s Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis in Norway studied tree-ring records from Europe and compared them with 7,711 historical plague outbreaks in order to establish if the weather conditions would actua...

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