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David Sparks Ph.d Mosquitoes and West Nile
by David Sparks Ph.d, click here for bio

Program: Line on Agriculture
Date: October 24, 2017

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Dr. Kevin Hankins, senior veterinarian, Equine Technical Services with Zoetis wrote me on the vulnerability of horses to West Nile virus so I picked up the phone. "Do the mosquitoes pick up the virus from birds? Yes. That is the cycle. The birds are the reservoir for the virus. Once the mosquitoes feed on those birds they get the virus and the mosquitoes also pass the virus onto the larva. Once you have an infected mosquito pool, it’s always going to be infected. The birds are the main reservoir for it in the Midwest. Crows are one of the main reservoirs for it but any bird can harbor West Nile virus and feeding on the bird gives it to the mosquito. How do the birds pick up the virus ? That’s a great question. That part of it they don’t know. This is a virus that has been around for centuries. The reason it is called West Nile is that it originally came from the Nile Valley

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