Onondaga County Health Commissioner, Dr. Cynthia B. Morrow, announced today that additional West Nile virus activity has been identified. The New York State Health Department laboratory has reported finding evidence of West Nile virus in two mosquito traps in Onondaga County. These pools were collected on Island Road and Route 298 in the town of Cicero.
Morrow reinforced to residents that the Health Department anticipates that there will continue to be West Nile virus activity for the rest of the season. “With West Nile virus being this widespread, it is critical that the public continue to take measures to reduce their risk of being bitten by mosquitoes.” “Although we’re nearing the end of the season, people should remain vigilant until there’s a hard frost.”
Mosquitoes are most active between dusk and dawn. Personal protection is advised during outdoor activities. Personal protection measures include wearing shoes and socks, long pants, and a long-sleeved shirt when outside for a long period of time. Applying a mosquito repellent containing DEET, Picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, or IR3535 is also recommended to prevent mosquito bites. Do not put the repellent directly onto children. Put it on your hands and apply it to your child. Do not put insect repellent on your face. Wash skin and clothing after returning indoors. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for application.
The following are ways of helping to reduce mosquito breeding grounds:
• Put away outdoor containers, ceramic pots or other containers that hold water
• Remove all tires from your property
• Drill holes in the bottoms of recycling containers that are kept outdoors
• Clean clogged rain gutters and make sure they continue to work properly
• Turn over wheelbarrows and wading pools when not in use
• Change water in bird baths at least every four days
• Clear vegetation and debris from the edges of ponds
• Clean chlorinated swimming pools, outdoor saunas, and hot tubs
• Drain water from pool covers
• Use landscaping to eliminate low spots where standing water accumulates
For more information about personal protection measures contact the Onondaga County
Health Department, Division of Environmental Health at 435-1649. For more information about mosquito borne diseases visit www.ongov.net/health. This website is updated weekly.