West Nile Virus Spreads

A Canada goose recently tested positive for the virus.

Two more animals in San Mateo County have tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV), the San Mateo County Mosquito and Vector Control District (SMCMVCD) announced quietly on Friday.

An American crow from Atherton and an Eastern gray squirrel from Menlo Park were both picked up by SMCMVCD on Aug. 2, and both tested "chronic-positive" for the virus.

In addition, Patch has just learned that a Canada goose in San Mateo recently tested positive for the virus in July.

All of this information was sent out sparsely, though, and not given to most media outlets.

"We do NOT currently plan to issue a press release for these animals, as chronic positives are not indicative of current WNV risk," Angie Nakano, a vector ecologist, wrote in an e-mail to district trustees.

The e-mail also indicated the district planned to continue extra mosquito trapping in the affected neighborhoods where animals had recently tested positive.

"We will test any vector species of mosquito trapped, but do not anticipate finding a current virus risk," Nakano said in the e-mail. "No mosquitoes trapped and tested so far have been found with WNV. Additional mosquitoes trapped recently from our chronic-WNV animal neighborhoods have been sent to state labs for testing, and we should have results back next week."

Nakano also recapped recent findings of WNV to date in 2012: 

  • Red-shouldered hawk picked up June 11 in Woodside (WNV+)
  • Eastern gray squirrel picked up July 3 in Menlo Park (WNV-chronic)
  • Lesser goldfinch picked up July 22 in Redwood City (WNV-chronic)
  • House sparrow picked up July 31 in Atherton (WNV-chronic)
  • Canada Goose picked up July 31 in San Mateo (WNV-chronic)
  • American crow picked up August 2 in Atherton (WNV-chronic)
  • Eastern gray squirrel picked up August 2 in Menlo Park (WNV-chronic)


PATCH WANTS TO KNOW - Do these recent findings of West Nile Virus in San Mateo County concern you? Tell us in the comments section below.

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