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Dead bird in Menlo Park tests positive for West Nile virus

 

Investigators with the county Mosquito and Vector Control District said that a dead bird found in the Willows area of Menlo Park on April 20 has tested positive for West Nile virus. This is the first indication of West Nile virus in San Mateo County in 2015, the district said in a press release.

While West Nile is a disease that primarily affects birds, it is potentially dangerous to humans, horses and other animals. But transmission requires a bite from an infected mosquito. It is not contagious.

The risk of infection in San Mateo County is low, but the district encourages residents to report fresh dead birds or tree squirrels. Either call (877) 968-2473 or file an online report at the state's website.

The mosquito control district asks San Mateo County residents to:

■ Eliminate sources of standing water, including flower pots, old tires, rain gutters and pet bowls.

■ Wear protective clothing when outside at dawn or dusk, and use tight-fitting screens to keep mosquitoes out of homes.

■ Use mosquito repellants that contain label instructions say contain either DEET, picaradin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535.

Dave Boyce

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