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West Nile Shows Up in Ohio

Dead bird was stricken with mosquito-borne disease

A dead blue jay in Ohio was infected with the West Nile virus, making it the first time the mosquito-borne disease has appeared that far west since it first showed up in the United States in 1999, says this wire story from CNN.

For most people, West Nile only causes a flu-like illness. But for those with compromised immune systems and the very young and very old, the disease can be much more serious. Nine people have died from the virus since it first appeared in the New York City area two years ago.

The disease has been quickly spreading along the Atlantic seaboard, reports this article from MSNBC. It has been found as far south as Florida and as far north as New England.

While most people don't need to be fearful of West Nile virus, they should try to do what they can to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds, according to this CNN story. You should also avoid being outside at dusk when mosquitoes are most active, or wear repellant if you must be outside.

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