>Apparently the birds are all acting funny, Mitch. I guess the lady who called to say dead birds were dropping from the trees wasn’t exaggerating.
From the article:
As West Nile virus has moved into Sacramento County with a vengeance, it has killed thousands of birds and left wildlife experts worried about the survival of one of Northern California’s more striking and clever birds: the yellow-billed magpie.
Sacramento County has not only the highest number of confirmed human cases of West Nile in the state, but also far and away the highest number of birds that have died from the disease
According to figures released Friday by the state Department of Health Services, the number of reported dead birds in Sacramento County was 12,198 so far in 2005, representing 17.6 percent of the total 69,203 dead bird reports for the state’s 58 counties.
Although not all the birds have been tested – state scientists stop testing once they’ve established West Nile has invaded an area – the state’s top West Nile experts said there is no question the high dead bird counts stem from the disease.
The actual numbers could easily be 10 times as high as those reported because many people do not report dead birds, said Stan Husted, supervising public health biologist for the state Department of Health Services.