West Nile Virus (WNV) is a disease people can get from being bitten by an infected mosquito. The disease is usually not serious, but some people can become very ill. There is no vaccine for humans that will prevent WNV. The best way to prevent WNV is to prevent mosquito bites.
For most people the risk of catching WNV is low. Being outside a lot puts you at higher risk, especially if you are outside when mosquitoes are most active, at dawn and dusk. People over 50 years of age have a higher chance of getting sick when infected with WNV, and should be careful to avoid mosquito bites. If you go outside when mosquitoes are active, put on insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, para-menthane-diol or IR 3535. Follow the directions on the label.
You can help prevent mosquitoes from breeding by draining all standing water on your property.
Horses can become very sick and die from WNV. A vaccine for horses is available. Contact your veterinarian to get your horse vaccinated.
Dead birds may be a sign that West Nile virus is circulating between birds and the mosquitoes in an area. To help monitor the presence of West Nile Virus in your community, report dead birds by calling the California Department of Public Health's West Nile Virus program at 1-877-WNV-BIRD (1-877-968-2473). Operators are available from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Sunday through Friday. After 5:00 p.m., please leave a message. In addition, you can report a dead bird anytime, by going on-line at the California West Nile Virus Website.
Due to the high volume of reports to the hotline, the California Department of Public Health is unable to respond to each report. However, all of the information received about dead birds is used by public agencies to track where birds are dying. This allows the local mosquito and vector control agencies to concentrate mosquito control efforts in those areas.
Call the numbers below or visit the Butte County Mosquito & Vector Control District's website for information regarding mosquito fogging and fogging area notification options
Butte County Mosquito & Vector Control 342-7350 (from Chico) or 533-6038 (from Oroville)
Durham Mosquito Abatement 345-2875
Oroville Mosquito Abatement 534-8383