Mosquito Population Testing
A robust mosquito sampling program is very important in order to identify areas where Arboviruses are active and to prevent human transmission. In 2019 19,684 mosquitoes were sampled in the SCMAD laboratory, and then taken to UC Davis to be tested for Arboviruses. The purpose of this testing is to identify areas within Solano County where the human population was at risk of contracting arboviruses such as the West Nile Virus (WNV). When these areas were identified Mosquito Control Technicians responded by conducting a habitat assessment and developing/implementing an effective abatement strategy to quickly lower the mosquito population in these areas. Solano County Public Health and the Municipalities City Manager were also notified of any positive results. In recent years in Solano County the West Nile Virus is usually discovered during the months of August to September. However WNV positive mosquitoes have been found as early as June and as late as October. Because of this we at the SCMAD encourage residents and visitors of Solano County to use an EPA approved insect repellent when spending time outdoors between in the summer and fall.
Dead Bird Testing
The Solano County Mosquito Abatement District works with the California Department of Health and The University of California Davis to collect and test dead birds within Solano County for arbovirus testing. The dead birds are reported by calling 1 (877) 968-2473 or reporting them online at http://westnile.ca.gov/report_wnv.php. Dead bird testing is an important component in our arbovirus surveillance program at the SCMAD, and it relies completely on reporting from the public. As you can see in Figure 1, in years where the reporting of dead birds was high there was also a higher instance of early WNV detection. As a result any areas in which birds tested positive for arboviruses are quickly inspected and mosquito breeding sources are treated in order to protect Solano County residents. If you suspect a bird could have died from or been infected by West Nile Virus in your area please don't hesitate, report it immediately.
Sentinel Chicken Flocks
The District operates 3 sentinel chicken flocks, a total of 36 chickens between the months of April and November. Blood samples were taken from the chickens biweekly and tested for the presence of arboviruses. Chickens are used as test subjects because once infected with the West Nile Virus the virus can not pass on to future hosts, and do not pose a risk of vectoring arboviruses. Information from the blood samples are used to identify areas were the virus was present and to develop/implement abatement strategies.
Human Arbovirus Case Response
It is our goal at the SCMAD to identify areas where arboviruses are present and reduce the risk of transmission to the human occupants of Solano County before they occur. In the event of a human infection, the occurrence is reported to the Solano County Mosquito Abatement District by the Solano County Public Health Department (SCPHD). All information that is supplied the SCMAD is provided in a manor that is compliant with all HIPAA regulations and guidelines. When possible the SCMAD will collaborate with the SCPHD to determine the likelihood of the disease transmission occurring in Solano County buy conducting trapping or habitat surveys. Mosquito abatement is conducted in areas where arboviruses are suspected in order to rapidly reduce the risk to the public. Any areas were arbovirus abatement occurs is monitored for 14-21 days to ensure a low risk to the public. In 2018 there were no confirmed human cases of arbovirus infections within Solano County, this was the first time Solano County did not have a positive human case since 2011.