Oswego (WSYR-TV) – The New York State Health Department has found evidence of West Nile virus in two collections of mosquitoes in the village of Central Square.
The Oswego County Health Department announced the discovery on Tuesday morning.
To date, there are no known human cases of the virus, according to the department.
The samples were collected on July 2 and July 4 and the health department was notified late Monday afternoon.
Acting Public Health Director Inga Black noted that the discovery is “is little earlier than what we’ve typically seen with West Nile virus in previous years. However, the virus has already appeared in Onondaga County and now is present in five counties in New York State.”
The Oswego County Health Department advises residents to take the following precautions:
- Use insect repellent properly. Repellents containing DEET or picaridin are the most effective and should be used according to package instructions.
- Whenever possible, limit outdoor activities in areas where mosquitoes are most active and between dusk and dawn which is the peak mosquito-biting time.
- As weather permits, wear protective clothing such as long-sleeved shirts, long pants, shoes and socks.
In addition, people should follow these protection measures to minimize mosquito populations in and around their homes and properties:
- Install or repair all door and window screens.
- Reduce or eliminate all standing water from old tires, pails, recycling containers, flower pots, wheelbarrows, wading pools and pool covers.
- Change the water in birdbaths and horse troughs twice a week.
For more information about West Nile or other mosquito-borne viruses, 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 www.health.state.ny.us