Current Information and Instructions:
While we no longer test birds for West Nile Virus, your report of a dead bird is extremely important to us because dead bird reports may indicate the presence of West Nile Virus. Our department uses dead bird reports as a gauge of possible West Nile activity. To report a dead bird contact our Environmental Services at (636) 797-3737, extension 3. Testing of dead birds was conducted by Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services through 2006. Our department was forced to discontinue bird testing in 2008 due to lack of available funds.
Crows, Blue Jays, Robins, Cardinals, European Starlings, Grackle, Sparrows, Owls, Eagles and Hawks are often affected by West Nile Virus. When you contact us please have the location address, date, and time the bird was found and if it was dead or dying. We also need your name and phone number. This information is required so that reports can be adequately analyzed and follow-up conducted if necessary.
What to do if you find a dead bird:
There is currently no evidence that West Nile virus can be spread directly from birds to people. However, dead birds can carry a variety of diseases and, therefore, should never be handled with bare hands.
To dispose of a dead bird, use plastic or latex gloves to carefully place it in a doubled plastic bag. Or you may use a doubled plastic bag as a glove to pick up the bird. Then wrap the bird in the bag, tie it off and place it in the outdoor trash. Wash your hands with soap and water when finished.
To read more about birds and West Nile Virus go to the CDC West Nile and Dead Birds page.