DNREC's Division of Fish and Wildlife Mosquito Control Section is asking the public's help in monitoring West Nile virus (WNV) by reporting sick or dead wild birds of certain species that may have contracted the virus.
The Mosquito Control Section requests that the public report sick or dead birds of the following species only: crows, blue jays, cardinals, robins, and hawks or owls, plus clusters of three or more sick or dead wild birds of any species. Bird specimens should have been dead for less than 24 hours and not appear to have died or been killed by other obvious causes.
Bird specimens collected by Mosquito Control are submitted to the Delaware Public Health Laboratory for virus testing. Due to complicated environmental reasons, wild birds are probably better indicators of WNV early in the season from May-July than Mosquito Control's sentinel chickens, which become better indicators later from August-October.
Sick or dead birds can be reported to the Mosquito Control Section between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday-Friday by calling:
New Castle County and northern Kent County from Dover north, call Mosquito Control's Glasgow office at (302) 836-2555; Remainder of southern Kent County and all of Sussex County, call Mosquito Control's Milford office at (302) 422-1512 or visit fw.delaware.gov/Services/Pages/MosquitoSection.aspx.
For more information about the West Nile Virus, call 800-282-8685 or call (302) 698-4500.