NW Wisconsin Bird Tests Positive For West Nile Viris
A dead crow found in northern Chippewa County has tested positive for West Nile virus. The Associated Press notes that this is the fourth county in the state of Wisconsin to report a bird infected with West Nile.
Experts say that infected birds serve as an early warning that the virus is present in the area and that people should be more vigilant in protecting themselves against mosquito bites. Mosquitoes become infected with West Nile virus by feeding on infected birds, and then potentially transmit the virus by biting other animals or people.
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has monitored the spread of West Nile virus since 2001 among wild birds, horses, mosquitoes, and people. Last year, 57 cases of West Nile virus infection were reported among Wisconsin residents, the highest annual number of cases reported since surveillance began in Wisconsin.
West Nile virus infections in humans have been reported from June through October; however, most reported becoming ill with West Nile virus in August and September.