LANCASTER –Two of 12 mosquito samples sent to UC Davis by the Antelope Valley Mosquito and Vector Control District tested positive for West Nile virus. The mosquitoes were trapped last week on the east side of Lancaster.
“We have been seeing an increased number of mosquitoes on the eastside of Lancaster again this year, so we have increased the surveillance in that area,” said District Manager Cei Kratz. “Since we have positives in three corners of the Antelope Valley, we can presume that WNV is present everywhere, and we advise residents to protect themselves from mosquitoes by using insect repellent and removing dirty, stagnant water around the home.”
As of today (7/28/14), the California Department of Public Health reports West Nile Virus activity from 35 Counties in 872 dead birds, 980 mosquito samples, and 39 sentinel chickens, as well as 15 human cases. So far the Antelope Valley has two West Nile virus positive dead birds and two positive mosquito samples.
West Nile virus is a potentially debilitating disease that’s transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito. Even ‘mild’ cases of West Nile Fever can cause patients enormous pain and discomfort for months.
To keep mosquitoes away and stay safe:
- Drain all standing water. Empty out small containers at least once a week, keep pools and spas chlorinated or drained, and repair all water leaks. Conserve water and prevent mosquito breeding.
- Remember that dusk and dawn are peak activity times for mosquitoes.
- Defend yourself by wearing long sleeved shirts and pants, and use mosquito repellents containing Deet, Picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, or IR3535 when outdoors during mosquito activity.
- Turn on fans to keep mosquitoes away.
- Keep screen doors and windows in good repair and close them.
- Don’t use bug zappers near your patio – they attract more mosquitoes than they kill.
- Get FREE mosquito-eating fish (Gambusia affinis) for fish ponds, pools, and horse troughs.
- Vaccinate your horses properly.
- Report stagnant pools and other backyard sources to the AVMVCD.
Report dead birds by calling 1-877-WNV-BIRD (877-968-2473) or online at www.westnile.ca.gov.
For questions or services, contact the Antelope Valley Mosquito & Vector Control District at 661-942-2917 or visit www.avmosquito.org.
[Information via press release from the Antelope Valley Mosquito and Vector Control District.]
Previous relates stories: