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The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 75(4), 2006, pp. 688–690


To better understand the potential environmental health risk presented by West Nile virus (WNV)- contaminated feces, we quantified the amount of WNV present in the feces of experimentally infected American crows (Corvus brachyrhynchos) and fish crows (Corvus ossifragus). Peak fecal titers ranged from 103.5 to 108.8 plaque-forming units (PFU)/g for 10 American crows and from 102.3 to 106.4 PFU/g for 10 fish crows. The presence of infectious WNV in bird feces indicates a potential for direct transmission of WNV. Thus, handlers of sick or dead birds should take appropriate precautions to avoid exposure to fecal material.

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