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First Mosquitoes of the Year Test Positive for Virus

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August 13, 2009

County Vector Control officials announced today that two batches of mosquitoes collected in Encinitas and Valley Center tested positive for West Nile virus (WNV).

Additionally, another two dead birds tested positive for West Nile virus, bringing this year’s total to two positive mosquito batches and 18 positive birds.

The two American crows were found in El Cajon and Valley Center.

 Video: New Method Speeds West Nile Virus Test Results

“Finding positive mosquito batches is significant because mosquitoes do not travel far from the site of the infection,” said Gary Erbeck, Director of the County Department of Environmental Health.

“We are sending letters to warn residents of the potential health risk that exists in their neighborhood. You should take personal precautions to protect yourself from mosquito bites.”

Protect Yourself from Mosquito Bites:
You can protect yourself from the WNV by staying inside when mosquitoes are most active and by wearing long sleeves and pants when outdoors, especially at dawn or dusk. Use insect repellents containing DEET, Picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus or IR 3535 when you are outdoors. Keep screens on doors and windows and make sure the screens are in good condition.

Prevent Mosquito Breeding: Backyard water sources are ideal breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Residents should dump or remove anything that can hold water, such as plant saucers, rain gutters, buckets, trash cans, children’s toys, old spare tires and wheelbarrows. Mosquito fish may be used to control mosquito breeding in backyard water sources such as unused swimming pools, ponds, fountains and horse troughs.

Please call County Vector Control at (858) 694-2888 to report dead birds, green swimming pools or other mosquito breeding sites. For more information about West Nile Virus, call 1-888-551-INFO (4636) or visit