West Nile Virus


West Nile Virus
History of West Nile Virus
Preventive Measures
Mosquito Facts
Mosquito Species

West Nile Virus


West Nile Virus Explained

West Nile Virus can be transmitted by something as typical as a mosquito bite. Although the chances of contracting the virus are quite low, people who live or plan to travel in mosquito infested areas may feel better protected if certain precautionary measures are taken. Repellents containing DEET and mosquito netting are still the best forms of protection from mosquito bites.

West Nile Virus originated in remote areas such as Africa, Eastern Europe, West Asia, and the Middle East. Until 1999 it had not previously been documented in the Western Hemisphere. While we are not sure where the U.S. and Canadian virus originated it is thought to have come from strains found in the middle-east. See West Nile Virus Statistics.

Studies conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have documented nine hundred fifty-four human cases of West Nile Virus in the United States in 2002. Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan and Mississippi were the areas most affected. Infected birds have also been found in Canadian provinces such as Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Quebec. See mosquito facts.

NEW FACTS about the West Nile virus in horses.

Mosquitoes contract West Nile Virus when they feed on infected birds. The infected blood circulates within a mosquito's salivary glands for a few days. When a human or animal is bitten by an infected mosquito it may take three to fourteen days for West Nile Virus symptoms to show up. Not everyone who contracts the virus will have a severe reaction. West Nile Virus symptoms can be very mild ranging from a small fever and flu-like symptoms or it can result in permanent neurological affects or even death.

West Nile virus can infect both humans and certain animals including horses, many types of birds and certain other mammals. Over one hundred ten species of birds have been known to be infected. Many people worry that the virus may be contagious, however there is no evidence to suggest that it can be spread from person to person or from animal to person. It has only been documented spreading by infected mosquitoes.

Get your community involved and develop an effective mosquito control plan.


Articles of Interest

The West Nile outbreak in 2012 was the worst in recent history, with over 1,600 cases and 66 deaths in the United States. Read more about the different factors that have lead to this epidemic.

West Nile Virus Symptoms in Birds - West Nile virus is a serious illness which is transmitted by a mosquito that carries the disease.

Ticks and West Nile Virus - Most people know that mosquitoes are carriers of the West Nile Virus, but many of us are unaware that ticks are also important contributors. Tick borne West Nile Virus is a serious cause for concern in North America.


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