The crow was collected in Lincoln, IL. West Nile encephalitis is
an infection of the brain caused by the WNV which is transmitted
through the bite of an infected mosquito. To date in Illinois for
2014, approximately 40 counties have reported WNV activity which
includes 2 human cases and no deaths. Although reported WNV activity
is decreased in Illinois this year as compared with 2013, WNV will
always remain a threat. In 2013, 117 human cases and 11 deaths were
This is a reminder that even though summer is coming to an end,
mosquitoes can remain active when temperatures are above 60 degrees
F and activity will usually persist until the first hard frost.
Because of the existing threat, the Logan County Department of
Public Health would like to remind everyone the best way to prevent
WNV disease is to reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home
and to use personal protection. The Logan County Department of
Public Health would like to urge you to practice the three “R’s” –
reduce, repel and report.
Do reduce your exposure by avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are
most active from dusk to dawn. Repair screens with tears or any
other outer openings. Keep windows shut and eliminate areas of
standing water around your property where mosquitoes can breed.
Do repel mosquitoes from biting when outdoors by wearing shoes,
socks, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt (light-colored clothing
is preferred). Wear repellents that contain DEET, picaridin, oil of
lemon eucalyptus or IR 3535 and use according to the label
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Do report dead birds to the Logan County Department of Public
Health. If the bird is dead less than 24 hours and has appeared
to die of natural causes, it may be eligible for testing. Bird
specimens will be accepted for testing until October 15th. In
addition, contact the health department or your local
municipality to report any stagnant water in roadside ditches,
abandoned pools, flooded yards or similar locations that may
provide breeding sites for mosquitoes.
If you are bitten by a mosquito, there is no reason to be tested
for WNV since illnesses related to mosquito bites are rare.
However, if you develop symptoms such as high fever, confusion,
muscle weakness or severe headache, you should see your doctor.
Remember to play it safe and to continue to take preventative
measures until mosquito activity fully ceases. If you have
questions regarding WNV, you can contact the Logan County
Department of Public Health at 217-735-2317.
[Text received; DON CAVI, LOGAN
COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH]