Mosquitoes in 40 CT towns test positive for West Nile virus

Brittany Mendoza
August 24, 2018

According to the B.C. Centre for Disease Control, the vast majority of people who contract West Nile will never show symptoms, but the disease is still serious for one in every 150 people infected. Since the beginning of 2018, four cases of EEEV infection in horses in Nassau County and one outbreak of EEEV in emus were reported. Some mosquitoes in Canada can spread West Nile virus to humans through mosquito bites.

The virus was detected in two dead ravens that were found in the Kimberley area as part of routine surveillance, Interior Health revealed Wednesday.

Interior Health says people over 50 and those with compromised immune systems are more at risk, and the risk of contracting the disease is highest in July and August.

West Nile Virus is a potentially deadly infection that can be transmitted to humans, according to the health department.

There have been 136 human cases of West Nile virus, including three fatalities, that have been diagnosed in CT residents since 2000.

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There is no evidence that people can get the virus from a horse that has the disease. Mosquitoes lay their larvae in standing water.

The hot and muggy weather is creating optimal breeding conditions for mosquitoes. Identify and remove potential breeding areas on your property - empty saucers under flowerpots; change water in bird baths twice a week; unclog rain gutters; drain tarps, tires, and other debris where rain water may collect; and install a pump in ornamental ponds or stock them with fish.

Use insect repellent containing DEET.

Maintain window and door screening to help keep mosquitoes outside.

"This is the critical time of summer when virus activity reaches its peak in the mosquito population", said Dr. Philip Armstrong, Medical Entomologist at the CAES. Choose loose-fitting, light-coloured, full-length trousers and a long-sleeved shirt in areas with many mosquitoes.

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