Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

West Nile Virus Heading Toward Texas

Date:
February 5, 2002
Source:
Texas A&M University
Summary:
Texans living near water are accustomed to annual warnings about St. Louis encephalitis. Now, they are being warned of a new virus sure to make its way into the state - West Nile encephalitis.

COLLEGE STATION - Texans living near water are accustomed to annual warnings about St. Louis encephalitis. Now, they are being warned of a new virus sure to make its way into the state - West Nile encephalitis.

Related Articles


First detected in New York in the fall of 1999, the West Nile virus has recently spread from the east coast to Louisiana and Arkansas, putting Texas veterinarians on alert for what may be the inevitable migration of the virus into the state.

"West Nile encephalitis belongs to the same group of diseases as St. Louis encephalitis, the Flaviviridae family, and is named for the area in Uganda, Africa where it was first detected in the 1920s," said Dr. Ian Tizard, veterinarian and director of the Schubot Exotic Bird Health Center at the College of Veterinary Medicine at Texas A&M University.

"This insect-borne virus spreads through the sting of infected mosquitoes and is carried by birds who act as reservoirs. While humans may become infected, the condition isn't usually too serious. Most healthy adults contracting the disease in the United States experience flu-like symptoms with no further complications. However, there have been a few fatal cases involving older patients. Among animals, the virus is most fatal to birds and horses."

Because of the susceptibility of wildlife, veterinarians who notice an unusually high number of dead birds (particularly crows) are asked to file a report with the Zoonosis Control Division of the Texas Department of Health.

In addition, surveillance programs are in place for the regular testing of dead birds, horses, captive waterfowl, and mosquitoes. The only commercial vaccine currently available is formulated for horses.

Since first detected, the virus has been largely seasonal in occurrence with most cases reported during warm weather months. The temperate Texas climate, however, is expected to sustain mosquitoes, and therefore West Nile, more continually than in northern climates.

Texas coastal areas, marshlands and other areas where mosquitoes breed in standing water and thrive are most likely to harbor infected mosquitoes.

"West Nile is essentially a bird virus," said Tizard. "A disease like this could be devastating to Texas birds, especially the exotic bird industry and the whooping crane population. Although citizens should know that it is illegal to handle wild birds (dead or alive), many people elect to dispose of them using gloves and a plastic bag to keep pets from eating them. If there are several dead birds in one area, contact either the Texas Department of Health or the Texas Animal Health Commission, and they will send someone to investigate the cause of death."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Texas A&M University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Texas A&M University. "West Nile Virus Heading Toward Texas." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 February 2002. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/02/020201074606.htm>.
Texas A&M University. (2002, February 5). West Nile Virus Heading Toward Texas. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 28, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/02/020201074606.htm
Texas A&M University. "West Nile Virus Heading Toward Texas." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/02/020201074606.htm (accessed March 28, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Lioness Has Rare Five-Cub Litter

Raw: Lioness Has Rare Five-Cub Litter

AP (Mar. 27, 2015) — A lioness in Pakistan has given birth to five cubs, twice the usual size of a litter. Queen gave birth to two other cubs just nine months ago. (March 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jockey Motion Tracking Reveals Racing Prowess

Jockey Motion Tracking Reveals Racing Prowess

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 26, 2015) — Using motion tracking technology, researchers from the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) are trying to establish an optimum horse riding style to train junior jockeys, as well as enhance safety, health and well-being of both racehorses and jockeys. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bear Cubs Tumble for the Media

Bear Cubs Tumble for the Media

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Mar. 26, 2015) — Two Andean bear cubs are unveiled at the U.S. National Zoo in Washington, D.C. Alicia Powell reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Botswana Talks to End Illegal Wildlife Trade

Botswana Talks to End Illegal Wildlife Trade

AFP (Mar. 25, 2015) — Experts are gathering in Botswana to try to end the illegal wildlife trade that is decimating populations of elephants, rhinos and other threatened species. Duration: 01:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins