Geospatial analysis between the environment and past incidences of West Nile virus in bird specimens in Ontario, Canada
- First Online:
- Cite this article as:
- Tam, B.Y., Martin, I. & Tsuji, L.J.S. GeoJournal (2014) 79: 805. doi:10.1007/s10708-014-9526-1
- 151 Downloads
Over recent years, the prevalence of the West Nile virus (WNV) in Canada has greatly increased due to various factors including changes in feeding behavior among WNV vectors. To understand whether changes in climate are a significant factor, the association between the environment and cases of WNV-infected bird specimens from 2009 to 2012 in Ontario, Canada, was examined using SAS and Quantum Geographic Information Systems (QGIS). Through a generalized linear mixed analysis, monthly totals of cooling degree days (CDD) and a two-way interaction between maximum temperature (Tmax) and precipitation were significantly positively associated to past incidences of WNV; while Tmax, precipitation, and a two-way interaction between CDD and precipitation were significantly negatively associated to past incidences of WNV. With the effects of increased warming, locations at higher latitudes in Canada may soon be at risk to WNV, as a positive case of WNV in a bird specimen was found close to the near north of Ontario in 2012.