Protect yourself from West Nile virus
West Nile virus is endemic to Africa,
Western Asia, Middle East, but has recently
expanded its range into Europe, Russia, Israel and
the US. Culex mosquitoes are the most
common vectors but other mosquitoes are competent
vectors as well. Wild birds are believed to be
the only natural virus reservoir.
Humans, horses, dogs and cats are
secondary or "dead-end" hosts. This means that the
virus can cause illness but does not multiply to
levels that would "infect" a biting mosquito.
There is no evidence that you can get the virus
from handling live or dead birds. No person to
person transmission occurs -- in other words the
virus is not contagious.
Protect yourself from West Nile virus by
reducing mosquito numbers in your yard and using
mosquito repellents and mosquito traps when
Fight The Bite! (a CDC site
about West Nile virus)