INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Marion County Public Health Department says they have found the first mosquitoes of the season carrying the West Nile virus. A sample of mosquitoes from a surveillance trap in Warren Township tested positive for the virus.
Traps are placed in areas throughout Marion County. The Mosquito Control program checks the traps daily to monitor the local mosquito population and test for West Nile virus.
No human cases of the virus have been reported this year in Marion County.
Most people who become infected with West Nile virus do not develop any symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes and kidney disease are at greater risk experiencing symptoms which include headache, body aches, joint pains or rash.
Less than one percent of people who are infected with West Nile virus will develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis.
Follow the four D’s of mosquito control to protect yourself from mosquito bites:
- DUSK – Stay indoors from dusk until dawn. If you do spend time outdoors….
- DRESS – Wear long sleeves and long pants when outside during these times.
- DEET – Use insect repellent containing DEET.
- DRAINAGE – Remove all standing water outside the home.
“Be sure to dump standing water in containers of any size and flush out bird baths every week,” said Matt Sinsko, coordinator of the Marion County Public Health Department’s Mosquito Control program. “Even small amounts of standing water are a potential mosquito breeding ground. Check for unused tires, clogged gutters, small recreational pools, and poorly operating septic systems.”