West Nile confirmed in Carson City | TahoeDailyTribune.com

West Nile confirmed in Carson City

Tribune News Service

CARSON CITY – A blue jay found here tested positive for West Nile virus, the first indication of the virus’ arrival in the area, the Carson City Health Department reported Tuesday.

The Nevada State Animal Disease and Food Safety Laboratory confirmed the virus in the bird Tuesday morning.

The bird was tested as part of the virus surveillance effort carried out by the Carson City Environmental Health Department. The virus is a mosquito-borne disease passed by infected birds. Some bird species, including crows and jays, are more susceptible to the disease and act as sentinels, marking the arrival of the virus in the area.

About 80 percent of those bitten by an infected mosquito are protected by their immune response and feel no effects. Symptoms of West Nile fever can include a fever of more than 100 degrees for greater than five days, muscle soreness and a lethargic feeling. In some cases, muscle tremors, nausea and a rash occurs. Patients diagnosed with West Nile fever are treatable and can often remain at home.

For information on West Nile virus and mosquitoes, call the Carson City Environmental Health Department at (775) 887-2190.