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West Nile Virus
West Nile Virus (WNV) is a disease that can lead to an infection called encephalitis (swelling of the brain). WNV was discovered in the U.S. (in New York City) in the summer of 1999. Since then it has spread to many other states, including Maine.
WNV is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. The mosquito gets the virus from biting an infected bird, and can then infect humans and some animals. Most mosquito bites do not lead to WNV because very few mosquitoes are infected. However, people over 50 and those with weakened immune systems are at higher risk for serious illness from WNV infection.
For detailed information:
Mosquito Information Fact Sheets:
Maine Forest Service, 287-2431 http://www.maine.gov/doc/mfs/mosquito.htm
Mosquito Control recommendations:
UMaine, Pest Management Office, 800 287-0279 http://www.umext.maine.edu/topics/pest.htm
Board of Pesticides Control, 287-2731 http://www.thinkfirstspraylast.org
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