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West Nile Virus

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
The West Nile Virus has just hit Texas; and it's right in our area. The news is reporting that Blue Jays are being found dead by the dozens. We often see Blue Jays in our backyard and I'm so worried that I may find one (or more) dead. Not only does is make me sad, but scared for my dogs because I don't want them to find one. I know if they do, they will scoop it up in their mouth.

The news is reporting that the animals most in danger are Blue Jays, Crows, possibly hawks, and horses. Horses are the only ones that have a vaccine, so horses in the area are being vaccinated. Because of the exotic birds at the Houston Zoo, they are vaccinating them with the horse vaccine in hopes that it might help.

So many bird are turning up dead the the county has set up drop boxes for us to take them so that tests can be run and confirmation can be made. They have also increased the mosquito spraying as well as started ariel mosquito spraying which hasn't been done here since the 60's.

I'm curious if any of you are familiar with this and what your cities/communities did to combat the problem?
post #2 of 4
As a horse owner it is a concern, but thankfully where I live there have been no reported cases yet. In 2001 730 horses were reported infected and 156 of them had to be euthanized. If a horse gets bitten by a mosquito carrying the virus it will get very sick quickly (the brain swells) but with diligent care around the clock if you can get the horse through the first 2 weeks, they will recover. It just makes me glad that I have bat boxes up to control mosquito population here which is sometimes quite fierce in the summer.
post #3 of 4
I live in rural, Ontario, Canada and we had this problem last year. If we found a dead bird (crows etc) you had to report immediately to the health sector and then they would come, collect the bird and test it for West Nile. There was never a big worry for the horses though (a riding stable is right across the road from my home). I think the major concern is with the mosquitos that can pick it up and carry it to humans.

post #4 of 4
This is really sad!! (and scary) I had never heard of this virus before now.
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