OSWEGO, NY – The Oswego County Health Department reported that the Eastern equine encephalitis virus has been found in ten new mosquito samples collected last week.
Five of the samples were taken from West Monroe’s Toad Harbor Big Bay Swamp area, two near the village of Central Square, two from the town of New Haven, and one near NYS Route 104 in the town of Albion.
The West Nile Virus has been found in one mosquito sample collected near the village of Central Square.
The mosquitoes were collected during routine sampling conducted by the Oswego County Health Department and the New York State Department of Health and sent to the state health department’s Wadsworth Center Laboratories near Albany for testing.
The amount of mosquitoes collected in the sampling is low.
Health officials believe the source of the virus is likely the same areas that have been treated with aerial spraying in recent weeks throughout Oswego County.
“We continue to monitor mosquito and virus activities,” said Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang. “I urge people keep vigilant to prevent exposure to mosquitoes, even though the mosquito population is low and mosquitoes are less active with the cooler evening temperatures. We need to practice personal prevention measures until we have a couple of heavy frosts later in the fall.”
Huang reminds residents that the most effective way to prevent mosquito bites is to continue practicing personal protection measures.
The Oswego County Health Department advises people to limit their outdoor activities between dusk and dawn, when mosquitoes are most active, and to wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, shoes and socks when outdoors.
Another personal protection measure is to apply a mosquito repellent containing DEET, Picaridin, or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus to prevent mosquito bites.
It should not be applied to the face and adults should not put the repellent directly onto children’s skin.
Instead, they should put it on their hands and then apply it to the child.
Insect repellents should be used according to label instructions.
Residents are also asked to help minimize mosquito populations in and around their houses and properties by eliminating all standing water around the home and repairing or replacing all window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside.
For more information about EEE and other viruses transmitted by mosquitoes, call the Oswego County Health Department at 315-349-3564 or 1-800-596-3200, ext.3564 between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., or visit their website at http://www.oswegocounty.com/health/index.html