YAKIMA, Wash.-- West Nile virus season is starting to ramp up in our area.
Officials say as warmer weather continues to hang around, mosquitos start becoming more active. So, the state Department of Health needs help keeping track of possible west Nile outbreaks.
An online dead bird tracking and monitoring system is up and running right now.
Officials say if people see a dead bird in their area, they should go online and report it.
Some of those reported will be tested for West Nile virus as a way for the health department to track the spread of the virus.
"It shows somewhat how active mosquito's are, for one. Secondly, how far and wide the virus has spread in the mosquito population around the state," said Gordon Kelly with the Yakima Health District.
Health officials also suggest keeping an eye on your animals and even getting horses vaccinated. Last year, a horse in Grandview was euthanized after contracting West Vile.
To protect yourself, officials suggest wearing bug spray and getting rid of any standing water around your property.