Medicine

West Nile Virus found in Kent County mosquitoes

West Nile Virus found in Kent County mosquitoes

Officials said West Nile virus was recently detected along the Delaware River in the Wilmington area and in west-central Kent County, with both instances confirmed by blood samples taken from the caged chickens that are used to detect the virus.

That brings the number of samples testing positive for the virus to 63 this year.

The spraying is to reduce high populations of mosquitoes, which can carry the West Nile virus.

Confirmation of the first West Nile virus positive bird means the virus is circulating between birds and mosquitoes and there is heightened risk of infection in humans.

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West Nile virus, which was first detected in birds and mosquito samples in Suffolk County in 1999 and annually since, is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito.

State environmental officials did not find West Nile virus or eastern equine encephalitis in the latest round of mosquito tests in Rhode Island.

To report mosquito problems or stagnant pools of water, call the Department of Public Works' Vector Control Division at 631-852-4270. In some people, it can cause a serious and potentially fatal infection of the brain and spinal cord. Wear gloves and place the dead bird or squirrel in a double plastic bag if you dispose of it yourself.


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