Hantavirus Headsup

8:20 a.m. on April 20, 2012 (EDT)
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Was reading in the 14'ers that they've had 3 deaths this year due to mouse crap dust (hantavirus). Keep that in mind when using trail shelters, sleeping on the dirt, and even spring cleaning your garage and basements.

Happy trails guys and dolls...

1:14 p.m. on April 20, 2012 (EDT)
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Damn Mickey is not so nice

1:49 p.m. on April 20, 2012 (EDT)
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jad - where were the locations of these deaths? Mostly the 4 corners region?

1:53 p.m. on April 20, 2012 (EDT)
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I am kinda wondering about this as well. We have tons of mice at every shelter on the LHHT. One of the many reasons I don't use the shelters is because they use me as a trampoline all night. 

When ya start a fire in the fireplaces at the shelters they come crawling out of them in droves. 

3:53 p.m. on April 20, 2012 (EDT)
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I saw a documentary a few years back and 4 corners and some indian rez's were having HUGE problems with this.........I will avoid being around mice crap dust. No shelter for ME!

4:30 p.m. on April 20, 2012 (EDT)
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I grew up in Colorado and at that time the Hantavirus was mostly a newly discovered thing in the area. That does not mean it was not there previous to the discovery of it in the area. If memory serves me correct almost all the cases were from people sweeping old out buildings in mostly very low populated areas. Almost all the cases at that time were in the 4 corners area. Growing up in Denver, Boulder and Buena Vista Colorado I do not remember any cases in those areas. Seems that since then most all the cases have still been in the four corner areas with a few out side the area. I would guess this to be because of better detection abilities and the CDC to be able to diagnose diseases faster & easier rather than the virus having spread. It never hurts to be safe however, so use caution when play with your mousy little friends.

6:35 p.m. on April 20, 2012 (EDT)
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8:29 a.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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The virus is widespread, found in rodent middens across the continent.  Fortunately the conditions conducive for it to spread to human make such occurrences rare.  You practically have to snort midden dust for this to happen.  Wear a mask when opening up walls in dry areas, avoid excavating burrows around arroyos, and such similar activities.

Ed

1:54 p.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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whomeworry said:

The virus is widespread, found in rodent middens across the continent. 

Around the world. It's actually a family of viruses (viri?) and is widespread in Africa, Asia, S America - anywhere there are rodents, mostly associated with mice.

2:40 p.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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Viruses or vira(sorry, Bill, virus is neuter), such as hantavirus, or other nasty microscopic bugs such as giardia, cryptospiridium, etc, have been with us for thousands, if not millions of years. By identification, we can give a name to the illness that has always been with us. Although less common here in the NW, there have been documented cases here for some time. A cabin I used to use as a warming hut for XC skiing(near Swauk Pass), has been posted with hanta warning signs for decades.

PS Hantavirus should not be confused with juntavirus, which has been widespread in South and Central America for more than 200 years.

4:09 p.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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I have occasionally come down with PANTAvirus, which is the strong desire to g to REI and get more hikin' pants.

5:45 p.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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Nasty stuff and nasty rodents.  Thanks for the info jad.

7:11 p.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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Be careful with that one giftogab. Most people feel the intial symtoms, which start at the bank account, and then can possibly spread to the credit card, line of credit and eventually selling organs on the black market.

7:49 p.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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giftogab said:

I have occasionally come down with PANTAvirus, which is the strong desire to g to REI and get more hikin' pants.

Thats what they call it?

I have a form of it but its applicable to all retailers and all gear/clothing. 

Nice one Gifto, I got a chuckle out of this. 

7:50 p.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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I know this is older post, but I'd like to add my two cents.  One of my professions has been in the pest control industry. I regularly found myself in conditions that had the potential of the exposure to hantavirus. In order keep myself safe, I used a respirator that covered my nose and mouth and was fitted with Heppa filters.  This I found necessary when just setting traps in the area of  dry,old rodent droppings. When it was necessary to remove those nasty old mickey mouse fecal pellets my procedure was to don my protective appeal IE respirator, safety glasses, gloves, long pants and gloves. Wet the affected area with water from a with a mist spray bottle.

This will minimize and airborne partials you may breath in.

I use a small cleaners type back pack vacuum with a heppa filter  to scrape and suck the nasty fecal matter. finally spray the area with a bit of bleach and water solution.

In a shelter i would hold my breath wet the area that i am concerned about then cover or clean that area.

8:45 p.m. on April 21, 2012 (EDT)
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Actually It isn't that old.

Welcome to TS  Mark

Some interesting pictures you're posting. 

10:13 a.m. on April 26, 2012 (EDT)
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I try to avoid shelters when I can, but when I need to use them, I'll put down a tyvek groundsheet inside, and sleep on top of that.

2:55 p.m. on April 26, 2012 (EDT)
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 As someone who has worked with Hantavirus and the mouse which carries it in the field and lab I would like to offer the following advise.


There has been 1 death in 2012 from hantavirus and that was in the state of Washington.  Hantavirus is not easy to contract  however once you get it is can progress to Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome which can be fatal. It is primarily spread by the common deer mouse Peromyscus maniculatus so not all mice are capable of spreading the disease.  In general there is very little to be concerned about especially if you take the proper precautions. If you have concerns I suggest reading Facts About Hantaviruses brochure which is located at the CDC.gov website Hantavirus page. 



10:06 p.m. on April 26, 2012 (EDT)
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From the news paper article.  The 3 cases were in CO were in Delta County which is on the Western slope.

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