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2nd Bird Tests Positive For West Nile In McLean County

bird with West Nile virus
McLean County Health Department
The McLean County Health Department said the county has two of the seven West Nile virus positive birds in Illinois.

The McLean County Health Department (MCHD) said Tuesday a second bird has tested positive for West Nile virus this fall.
The latest was found in the Lexington area. The first was discovered in mid-September in the 61704 zip code that covers south and east Bloomington.

McLean is one of 22 counties that has confirmed West Nile activity. There are 24 human cases of the mosquito-borne virus, but none in McLean County.

MCHD said there have been seven positive birds in Illinois and 2,277 positive mosquito pools samples.

The department said West Nile virus can cause encephalitis, an inflammation of the brain, though cases are rare. Mild cases can cause a fever or headache, but severe cases can lead to paralysis or death, particularly among high-risk populations.

The department said people can limit their exposure to West Nile virus by keeping skin covered with long pants and long-sleeved shirts when outside, making sure windows and doors have screens to keep mosquitos from entering and removing sources of standing water that can serve as a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

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Eric Stock is the News Director at WGLT. You can contact Eric at ejstoc1@ilstu.edu.
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