The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) is asking residents to submit dead birds residents may find to them so officials can better document the spread of West Nile Virus.
DHEC officials say, "Birds play an important role in maintaining and spreading West Nile virus (WNV). Mosquitoes become infected with WNV when they feed on infected birds that carry the virus in their blood. After 1½ to 2 weeks, infected mosquitoes can then transmit WNV to humans and other animals."
Tracking the virus in birds that have a high death rate from WNV alerts DHEC to virus activity in a certain area of the state.
Signs of WNV illness in birds include weakness, sluggishness, shaking, seizures, inability to walk/fly/perch, blindness, or lack of fear of humans.
For more information on West Nile Virus, mosquitoes, and how you can submit a dead bird to DHEC, click here.
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