Richland County Officials: West Nile Virus Found in Dead Bird in Irmo

Richland County Officials: West Nile Virus Found in Dead Bird in Irmo

According to an article in the Jacksonville Journal Courier, Greene County health officials confirmed the presence of West Nile virus in a mosquito found near Roodhouse.

"Since mosquitos can carry disease such as West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus, we want to remind residents to take steps to prevent bites".

Balgeman also said the VCHD Environmental Health division is asking for the public's assistance in reporting birds that appear to have died of natural causes, so they can be collected and sent to the University of Illinois' Veterinary School laboratory. This is the first dead bird that has tested positive for West Nile Virus in 2017 in the Yucaipa area. Humans most commonly get the virus from the bites of infected mosquitoes, which pick up the virus from infected birds. "We pretty much find West Nile every year", Rys added.

Rys and her colleague handed out Fight The Bite! brochures in the Waverly-Belmont neighborhood after mosquitoes were recently found to have West Nile.

No confirmed cases of West Nile virus in humans have been reported in MI. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment notes that while West Nile can not be spread from person-to-person, there have been cases of individuals getting the virus from blood transfusions, organ transplants, and from mother-to-baby during the birthing process. The IDPH recommends that they include practice of three 'R's: reduce, repel and report.

Avoid spending time outdoors at dawn and dusk - this is when mosquitoes are most active.

"We've received so much rain that large standing water is not getting stagnate where mosquito larvae are hatching".

As for how to protect against the illness, The Illinois Department of Public Health says two of the most effective measures are to wear insect repellent and protective clothing. Physicians should be consulted before using repellents on infants.

Drain or dump - Remove all standing water around your property where mosquitoes can lay eggs such as birdbaths, green swimming pools, ponds, old tires, buckets, flower pots, clogged gutters, or even puddles from leaky sprinklers.

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