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SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) — Health officials in San Bernardino County are enlisting chickens to provide an early warning for West Nile virus, which is commonly spread by mosquitoes.

The San Bernardino Sun reported Monday that the Department of Public Health regularly tests White Leghorn hens.

When one of 10 chickens becomes infected, officials will move into the area, looking to shut down water sources where the infected mosquitoes are breeding.

Officials say the chickens allow the department to allocate resources more efficiently.

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