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Tuesday, March 19 , 2019, 5:02 pm | Mostly Cloudy 58º


2 Birds Test Positive for West Nile Virus in Santa Barbara County

Two birds have tested positive for West Nile Virus in Santa Barbara County and officials will increase mosquito detection programs in response.

One of the birds was from Santa Ynez and the other was from the Tuckers Grove area near Goleta, according to the Mosquito and Vector Management District of Santa Barbara County.

In April, mosquitos with West Nile Virus were detected near Goleta’s Lake Los Carneros.

The virus can cause flu-like illness in humans, county officials said, and there is an increased risk of serious illness for the elderly and people with suppressed immune systems.

The virus is typically spread from mosquitos to birds, but mosquitos can also infect humans, horses and other animals, according to the county.

The Mosquito and Vector Management District is increasing mosquito detection surveys and killing mosquito larva in the detection areas

“The dead bird WNV detection program usually is shut down over the winter, but because of these late detections, the mosquito district will continue to investigate dead bird reports in Santa Barbara County,” the district said in a statement.

Dead or sick birds can be reported to the West Nile Virus Dead Bird Hotline at 1.877.968.2473. 

Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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