West Nile Virus found in Elkhart County mosquitoes

(Source: WAVE 3 News)
Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 4:26 PM EDT
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ELKHART COUNTY, Ind. (WNDU) - The Elkhart County Health Department says adult mosquitoes collected by the Indiana Department of Health in mid-July have tested positive for West Nile Virus.

West Nile Virus transmission tend to be higher in the late summer and early fall, so the potential exists for humans to be impacted soon by West Nile Virus or other mosquito borne illnesses.

Mosquitoes will remain active at temperatures above 60 degrees Fahrenheit and tend to be more active in the evening and pre-dawn hours.

Health officials encourage you to take precautions to protect yourself and your family from mosquitoes. Common precautions include:

  • Avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are active (especially late afternoon, dusk to dawn, and early morning)
  • Apply an EPA-registered insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus to clothes and exposed skin
  • Cover exposed skin by wearing long sleeves and long pants when outdoors
  • Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out of the home

Health officials say even a container as small as a bottle cap can breed mosquitoes, so you should take the following steps to eliminate potential breeding grounds:

  • Discard old tires, tin cans. Ceramic pots, or other containers that can hold water
  • Repair failed septic systems
  • Drill holes in the bottom of recycling containers left outdoors
  • Keep grass cut short and shrubbery trimmed
  • Clean clogged roof gutters, particularly if leaves tend to plug up the drains
  • Frequently replace the water in pet bowls
  • Flush ornamental fountains and birdbaths periodically and aerate ornamental ponds
  • Keep swimming pools cleaned, chlorinated, and running

If you have any other questions, you can call the Elkhart County Health Department at 574-971-4600.

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