Environmental Health Specialist II
(509) 962-7009 or
(509) 933-8225

Vector Borne Disease Program

The vector program monitors and controls vector borne diseases such as West Nile virus and rabies. The health department sets mosquito traps around the county each West Nile Virus season to determine if the virus is present in Kittitas County. The health department also responds to reports of communicable disease exposure related to vectors.

Report a dead bird online

Rodent Prevention

Local Exterminators and Pest Control

Willards Pest Control 509-962-2044
Jordans Wildlife Control 509-312-7025
Prosite Pest Control (Micah Flory) 509-925-5900
B&F Services 509-925-5466
Arborcare Lawn and Pest Control (Russ Rumble) 509-899-1243

This is not an inclusive list. If you are a licensed pest control operator and would like to be on this list please contact:
Melissa Schumaier 509-962-7009
Tristen Lamb 509-933-8225

If you find a dead bird

  • If you find a dead crow, raven, magpie, jay or hawk and the bird is fresh and undamaged, please report it for WNV tracking purposes and possible West Nile virus testing. Report birds found in Kittitas County by calling the health department at (509) 962-7515 or use the Online Bird Reporting Form.
  • Dead chickens and other domestic poultry should be reported to the Washington State Department of Agriculture (1-800-606-3056).
  • Single waterfowl or shorebirds, and wild bird die-offs should be reported to the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife (1-800-606-8768).
  • Do not handle dead birds with your bare hands. Instead, use gloves, a shovel, or a plastic bag placed over your hand to pick up the bird. Double-wrap the bird in two plastic bags before placing in your garbage. Be sure to wash your hands, even if you were careful to not touch the bird.

Reminders for submitting dead birds

  • The cause of death must be from natural causes. There can be no obvious signs of death (hit by a car, killed by a cat, bullet hole, etc.).
  • The bird must be freshly dead--less than 24 hours-- intact (not scavenged), and free of excessive heat damage to be tested. If the carcass has an odor, is soft and mushy, has skin discoloration, feathers or skin that easily rubs off, sunken eyes, or has maggots present, it is too decomposed for testing.
  • Since the cause of death is unknown, it is always best to avoid direct contact with the bird.
  • The Kittitas County Public Health Department is not available on the weekends to collect dead birds. If you find a dead bird on the weekend, please make note of the approximate time of death and location of the bird and call the information in on Monday morning, report it with the Online Bird Reporting Form.

Vector borne diseases are pests that may spread pathogens that can cause serious, life-altering, and even fatal disease. Some diseases transmitted by pests include West Nile virus spread by mosquitoes, Lyme disease by ticks, and Hantavirus by deer mice.

More Information

What is West Nile virus?

West Nile virus can be a serious, even fatal, illness. It can affect people, horses, certain types of birds, and other animals. West Nile virus is almost always spread to people by the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes become infected after feeding on birds that carry the virus. There is no evidence that West Nile virus can be spread by direct contact with infected people or animals. Most people who are infected with West Nile virus will not get sick.

Additional Information

What is Rabies?

Rabies is a viral disease that is most often transferred between warm blooded animals by bites or scratches from a rabid animal. Rabies virus infects the central nervous system causing encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). It is almost always fatal. Rabies may be carried by raccoons, skunks, bats and foxes. Bats are the primary carrier of Rabies in United States and Canada. Between 5-10% of bats submitted for testing are found to be infected. The odds of becoming infected with Rabies is extremely low. Since 1990 the number of reported cases in the United States has ranged from one to seven cases annually.

If you believe you have come in contact with an animal infected with rabies, please call 509-962-7515.
Rabies - Washington State Department of Health
Rabies - Center for Disease Control
Rabies Fact Sheet - World Health Organization

Resources & Links

The current number of West Nile virus cases in Kittitas County is available from the Washington State Department of Health Zoonotic Program.