Oswego County Health Department Reports EEE in West Monroe

OSWEGO – The Oswego County Health Department was notified today (Aug. 25) that the Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus was detected in bird-biting mosquitoes collected Aug. 19 on Toad Harbor Road in West Monroe.

Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang said that the New York State Department of Health has released updated test results regarding EEE and West Nile virus activity.

Additional tests showed that the report of positive West Nile virus in the towns of New Haven and Albion earlier this week was negative.

Today the state notified the Oswego County Health Department that no West Nile activity has been detected in Oswego County.

Huang said people should continue to be vigilant and take measures to protect themselves from mosquitoes.

Insect repellents that contain DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus are effective but should be used with care.

Repellents containing permethrin are meant for clothing and gear and should not be applied directly to the skin.

Repellents containing DEET should not be applied to skin under clothing.

Read the product label and use according to package instructions.

Health officials recommend that people take these steps to protect themselves from mosquitoes and reduce mosquito populations around their homes:

– Repair or replace all window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside, and reduce or eliminate all standing water.

– Limit outdoor activities between dusk and dawn, when mosquitoes are most active.

– Dispose of old tires. Used tires are a significant mosquito breeding site and are accepted at Oswego County transfer stations. Call the Oswego County Solid Waste Department at 591-9200 for details.

– Empty or dispose of pails, cans, flower pots, and similar water-holding containers.

– Drill holes in the bottoms of recycling containers that are kept outdoors.

– Clear roof gutters and be sure they drain properly.

– Turn over wheelbarrows and wading pools when not in use.

– Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs and drain pool covers.

– Change the water in birdbaths and horse troughs twice a week.

– Remove leaf debris from yards and gardens and clean vegetation and debris from the edge of ponds.

– Use landscaping to eliminate standing water that collects on your property.

For more information about protecting your family against mosquitoes, call the Oswego County Health Department at 315-349-3547 or 1-800-596-3200, ext. 3547, or visit the New York State Department of Health website at http://www.health.ny.gov/publications/2731/