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State

1st bird confirmed to have West Nile virus in 2014

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Public Health has confirmed that a bird and mosquitoes have tested positive for West Nile virus.

Department officials say Henry County Health Department employees found a bird that was infected with the virus on May 29 in Colona. Madison County Health Department found a batch of mosquitoes that tested positive for West Nile in Godfrey a day later.

Mosquitoes pick up the virus by feeding on infected birds and passing it on through their bits. Common symptoms include fever, nausea, head and muscle aches.

Public Health officials say that virus activity is largely dependent on the weather.

They say surveillance for West Nile virus in Illinois includes tests on mosquito batches, dead crows and birds, in addition to the testing sick humans and horses.

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