PALMDALE – Mosquitoes collected from various mosquito traps in Palmdale have tested positive for West Nile virus, authorities said.
The traps were located near 6th Street East and Avenue R; 20th Street East and Avenue S; and 25th St. East and Avenue R-6, according to the Antelope Valley Mosquito & Vector Control District.
“So far we have sent in 92 mosquito samples this year, nine of which have been positive for West Nile virus”, states District Entomologist Karen Mellor. “At this time last year we had five West Nile virus positive samples that were all in Lancaster.”
West Nile Virus is transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito. Although most people that are infected do not show any symptoms, West Nile Virus is a potentially debilitating disease. Even mild cases of West Nile fever can cause patients enormous pain and discomfort for months. Though deaths are rare and typically involve patients who are already vulnerable, the virus can also cause paralysis, encephalitis and meningitis.
West Nile virus is endemic in the Antelope Valley. This means that it is regularly found in the Antelope Valley every mosquito season. The District urges residents to take precautions against mosquito bites by following these recommendations:
- Check property for standing water and get rid of it.
- When mosquitoes are active, use EPA registered insect repellents that contain one of these main ingredients: DEET, Picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, IR3535.
- Make sure your screens on windows and doors are in good repair to avoid mosquitoes in the home.
- Check around faucets, irrigation systems and air conditioner units, and repair leaks or puddles that remain for several days.
- Report stagnant pools and other backyard sources to the AVMVCD at 661-942-2917.
- Report dead birds by calling 1-877-WNV-BIRD (877-968-2473).
AVMVCD personnel will continue to conduct intensive searches of the entire District to keep mosquito populations low and reduce the chances of residents getting ill. To report a green pool or mosquito nuisance, call 661-942-2917. To stay up-to-date on new West Nile Virus activity in the Antelope Valley and any mosquito-related information, visit www.avmosquito.org. For more information, contact the Antelope Valley Mosquito & Vector Control District at 661-942-2917.
[Information via news release from the Antelope Valley Mosquito & Vector Control District.]