The Pitkin County Environmental Health & Natural Resources Department has had a mosquito surveillance and West Nile Virus (WNV) educational program since 2003. During every year of this program there has been minimal mosquito activity, with very few of the mosquito species that is the prime carrier of WNV, Culex tarsalis, and none testing positive for the virus. There have been no positive human cases. However, while West Nile Virus has not been a problem in the Roaring Fork Valley to date, it is not going away. There have been WNV-positive mosquitoes, human cases and even deaths in popular destinations, including the corridor from Glenwood Springs to Grand Junction and Utah. All of Colorado's neighboring states have reported West Nile virus activity in either humans or animals.Summaries of Pitkin County's West Nile Virus Surveillance & Educational ProgramsAvoid Mosquito Bites & Avoid West Nile Virus
- Use mosquito repellent
- Eliminate mosquito breeding sites
Reduce your risk of contracting West Nile Virus during outdoor activity. From DUSK TO DAWN is when mosquitoes that carry the virus are most active, so take precautions to prevent mosquito bites. Use mosquito repellents that contain DEET or Picaridin and wear protective clothing, such as long sleeves and long pants.
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To Report Dead Birds
A new, comprehensive system has been established in Colorado for reporting sick, dying or dead birds that might be carriers either of West Nile Virus or avian flu.
Persons who find dead birds, or would like to report sick or dying birds in their bird flocks in the state, should call the Colorado Health Emergency Line for the Public (CoHELP) at 1-877-462-2911. The emergency line staff is available to respond to hotline calls from 7 a.m.-11 p.m. on Mondays through Fridays and from 9:30 a.m.- 8 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.