Testing for West Nile Virus in Illinois is beginning earlier than usual this year. The Illinois Department of Public Health began accepting dead birds for testing yesterday, a few weeks ahead of schedule because of the warm weather. But spokesperson Melaney Arnold says it’s too early to tell if the mild spring means the virus will be more prevalent this summer.
Last year in Illinois, the virus was found in 19 counties. 34 people were infected with West Nile and three died.