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Environmental Health

Environmental Health

West Nile Virus

"West Nile virus (WNV) is a mosquito-borne virus that can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) and/or meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord).  Outbreaks of the disease caused by WNV have occurred in Egypt, Asia, Israel, South Africa and some parts of Europe and Australia.  The virus was first seen in the US in the fall of 1999 in New York City, and has since spread across the US to the Pacific Ocean, into several Canadian Provinces and possibly into Mexico.  WNV was first detected in Michigan in 2001 and has been detected in Michigan each year since 2001.

WNV primarily infects and multiplies in birds, which serve as reservoirs for the virus.  The virus is spread between birds mostly through the bite of an infected mosquito.  It has been detected in more that 162 species of birds, however corvids (crows and blue jays) are more severely affected than other species of birds and often die as a result of their infection.  When the level of virus circulating amongst birds and mosquitoes becomes high, horses and humans can be accidentally infected.  The virus also has been shown to infect several other types of mammals (including bats, cats, chipmunks, squirrels, skunks, and domestic rabbits) usually without causing clinical signs."  Source: Michigan Website on West Nile Virus  January 11, 2010.

Monroe County Public Health Fact Sheets:

Additional Information & Contacts (pdf)

Mosquito Control For Outdoor Recreational Area & Businesses (pdf)

Preventative Measures For Your Family (pdf)

Preventative Measures For Your Yard (pdf)

West Nile Virus Questions & Answers (pdf)

West Nile Virus How to Report Dead Birds (pdf)

Mosquito Control For School Grounds & Students (pdf)

Monroe County Surveillance Program (pdf)

West Nile Virus & Birds (pdf)

West Nile Virus & Wild Game Hunters (pdf)

Insect Repellent Use & Spray (pdf)

To obtain additional information please visit the following web sites:

Or You May Call:

Local West Nile Virus Hotline Toll Free1.888.354.5500 ext 7850

MSU/Monroe County Extension Service:  734.240.3170  Toll Free 1.888.354.5500 ext 3170

Michigan Department of Public Health West Nile Virus Hotline:  Toll Free 1.888.668.0869