The Sacramento-Yolo Mosquito and Vector Control District issued a press release today alerting the public that the first birds of the year have tested positive for West Nile Virus.

Elk Grove, Ca.—The Sacramento-Yolo Mosquito and Vector Control District has confirmed that the first dead birds of the season have tested positive for West Nile virus. The two Scrub Jays were collected near Florin Rd. in south Sacramento and it is the first indication of West Nile virus activity for the 2023 season. “Finding the first positive bird is always significant because it provides an early warning sign for the disease,” said Gary Goodman, District Manager.  “It confirms that the virus is present, shows us where we may find positive mosquito samples and where human cases may develop later in the season” added Goodman. A record amount of rain and hotter than normal temperatures for this time of the year could indicate a busy mosquito and West Nile virus season ahead. While this is the first evidence of the virus within the District’s service area; other counties throughout the state have already started to register activity.

The public is encouraged to report dead birds by calling the California Department of Public Health hotline at 877-WNV-BIRD (877-968-2473).  Some species of birds such as crows, jays and magpies are very susceptible to the virus. Though not all birds that are reported will be picked up and tested, the reports provide valuable information and assist with mosquito surveillance and control efforts that help protect public health. 

In response to the detection of WNV activity, the District will increase its mosquito trapping and surveillance in the area to find sources where mosquitoes may be breeding.

Residents may visit www.FIGHTtheBITE.net to subscribe to mailing lists to receive email notifications for upcoming mosquito treatments by zip code. To sign up, go to Spray Notifications on the website. 

To report mosquito problems, please call 1-800-429-1022 or fill out a service request online at www.FIGHTtheBITE.net

2023 West Nile virus activity update:

Sacramento County:  2 dead birds have tested positive for West Nile virus to date. 

Yolo County:  No activity has been registered so far.
Practice the District D’s of Mosquito Prevention:
DRAIN standing water that may produce mosquitoes. 
DAWN and DUSK are times to avoid being outdoors.   
DRESS appropriately be wearing long sleeves and pants when outside. 
DEFEND yourself by using an effective insect repellent.  Make sure to follow label directions! 
DOOR and window screens should be in good working condition.
DISTRICT personnel are also available to address any mosquito problems. Call them at 1-800-429-1022 or visit www.FIGHTtheBITE.net

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