Volume 20, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



On a farm in southwestern Wisconsin, where a case of California encephalitis had occurred, an 18-month study was made of small, forest-dwelling mammals and the appearance of antibodies to California group virus in them. The population densities of the mammals and their movements were obtained from trapping records and the observation of marked animals in the field. Antibodies to CEV, probably LaCrosse virus, developed in 7 of 44 tree squirrels ( and ) between mid-July and mid-December. Highest antibody rates were found in chipmunks, (53%), and tree squirrels (39%), which by their habits are closely associated with the mosquito . Lower antibody rates were found in cottontail rabbits, (15%), flying squirrels. (5%), and white-footed mice, (0%), which have less ecological overlap with , from which most isolates of LaCrosse virus have been made. We concluded that our findings were consistent with the hypothesis that is a common vector of CEV among these mammals in southwestern Wisconsin.


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