Mosquitoes in South County test positive for West Nile Virus
PROVO, Utah (September 9, 2013) - - The Utah County Health Department (UCHD) announced today that West Nile Virus (WNV) has been detected in mosquitos in the county.
"We received a positive test result for West Nile virus in a group of Culex pipien mosquitos from a south county," said Bob Mower, Mosquito Abatement Division director. "The particular species likes very organic, gunky water found in the catch basins near residential areas as well as neglected fish ponds or standing water in containers found in yards. Considering our recent rains, this is a good reminder to dump any containers with water that might provide habitat for these mosquitos."
While many states have been reporting extremely high levels of disease, Mower explains Utah hasn't seen very much this year. "We really don't want individuals to be complacent, however. We haven't seen as many mosquitos, but those that we have are of the species that carry West Nile.
Mower said that while spraying by Utah County Mosquito Abatement staff does help reduce the number of mosquitos in an area, personal vigilance is the key to preventing spread of the virus. Prevention measures include:
- Avoid outdoor activities, such as gardening, at dusk through dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
- If outside during the periods when mosquitoes are most active, cover up by wearing long-sleeved shirts, pants, shoes and socks.
- Use mosquito repellents with DEET. Follow product directions for children and how often it should be applied.
- Eliminate standing water in tires or similar water-holding containers as these may serve as mosquito breeding sites. Change the water in birdbaths at least weekly.
For information about WNV or Utah County mosquito abatement efforts, either visit www.UtahCountyHealth.org or call 801-851-7637.
The Utah County Health Department is committed to promoting the health of our community by preventing avoidable disease and injury by monitoring the health of our community to assure conditions in which people can be healthy. For information on UCHD programs or services, please visit www.UtahCountyHealth.org or call 801-851-7000. You can also now follow the UCHD at www.FaceBook.com/uchealth, www.instagram.com/UtahCountyHealthDept, www.twitter.com/uchd, or www.pinterest.com/uchd.