Mosquito season is a-buzzin’

It’s the time of year to be wary of the West Nile virus

Slap on your bug spray and keep an eye out for dead birds, because the West Nile virus season has arrived.

As of mid-March, the Butte County Mosquito and Vector Control District resumed its annual dead-bird testing, a program in which birds that have been dead less than 48 hours are tested to determine if and how the virus is affecting the local avian population. Report dead birds to the West Nile virus hotline at 1-877-968-BIRD, or online at or

Already this year, a bird in Elk Grove has tested positive for the virus. West Nile is spread through the bite of infected mosquitoes, which become vectors after feeding on infected birds. Horses are highly susceptible to the virus and should be vaccinated annually.

Eliminating standing water reduces mosquitoes around the home. Wear protective clothing and avoid the outdoors during dusk and dawn to avoid being bitten.