SECOND HUMAN CASE OF WEST NILE VIRUS AND MORE VIRUS-POSITIVE BIRDS AND MOSQUITOES IN CONTRA COSTA COUNTY
RECENT RAINS CREATE MORE MOSQUITO HABITATS - PUBLIC URGED TO DUMP STANDING WATER AND WEAR MOSQUITO REPELLENT
"The recent rains have already created a vast and varied habitat for mosquitoes and coupled with the warmer weather, mosquitoes may flourish," said Deborah Bass, public affairs manager for the District. "It's still mosquito season in Contra Costa County."
Earlier this week, the California Department of Public Health announced the first two fatalities in California
from West Nile virus this year, a 37year-old man and an 86 year-old man, both from Kern County.
Residents are urged to continue to report dead birds to the West Nile Virus state hotline: 1-877-968-2473. Reports may also be made online at www.westnile.ca.gov.
Dead bird reports are an important tool for West Nile virus detection, even if the bird is not picked up and tested. Lack of dead bird reports decreases the District's ability to detect higher risk locations.
The District makes every effort to notify residents about West Nile virus activity and adult mosquito spraying events. People wishing to be notified about adult mosquito spraying in residential areas have several options. They may visit the District's website
and opt to receive the maps and notifications automatically by email.There is also an option to receive media releases and the Mosquito Bytes newsletter. They can also view all of these communications directly on the District's website. Spray schedules are also available by calling the District at (925) 771-6195 and listening to a recorded message.
Residents are urged to help reduce their risk of contracting mosquito-borne diseases by following these guidelines:
- Don't breed mosquitoes on your property. Dump or drain standing water. Mosquitoes can't begin their life without water.
- Defend yourself against mosquitoes using repellents containing DEET, Picaridin, or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus.
- Avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are present, typically Dawn and Dusk.
- Report neglected swimming pools by calling 925-771-6195 or visiting www.ContraCostaMosquito.com Anonymous calls accepted. Just one neglected pool can produce more than 1 million mosquitoes and affect people up to five miles away.
Since 2005, 38 people in Contra Costa County have been diagnosed with West Nile virus. In 2006, two people died from the disease. Studies have shown that the majority of cases are undiagnosed.
Contra Costa Mosquito & Vector Control District, an independent special district and public health agency, is located at 155 Mason Circle in Concord. Call the District to report mosquito problems at (925) 771-6195 or visit their office between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. to get FREE mosquitofish for ornamental ponds, horse troughs or neglected swimming pools.
For information concerning human West Nile virus symptoms, prevention, or testing, please call the Contra Costa Health Services department at (888) 959-9911. For information concerning West Nile virus and horses, please call the California Department of Food and Agriculture Animal Health Branch at (916) 654-1447.