Oswego County News Release
Oswego County Public Information Office, 46 East Bridge St., Oswego, NY 13126

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July 13, 2007

Mosquitoes Test Positive for EEE in Central Square

A pool of mosquitoes collected in the village of Central Square has tested positive for Eastern equine encephalitis, the Oswego County Health Department announced today. Public Health Director Kathleen Smith said the pool of mosquitoes was collected July 4.

The virus was found in a type of mosquito that feeds on birds, not humans, said Smith. The county and state Health Departments will continue to closely monitor the mosquito population.

“The EEE virus has been found in bird-biting mosquitoes, not in mosquitoes that feed on humans,” said Smith. “We are not at the point where it is necessary to do any spraying for mosquitoes. However, we are keeping a very close eye on the situation and are looking for any increase in the mosquito population that results from the rains of the past few days.”

Oswego County and the state Health Departments regularly collect mosquitoes from several locations along the north shore of Oneida Lake through the mosquito surveillance program. Mosquitoes are isolated by species and sent to the state Health Department’s Wadsworth Laboratories near Albany where they are tested for the Eastern equine encephalitis virus.

Smith again emphasizes that people should take measures to protect themselves from mosquito bites.

People can reduce their chances of being exposed to EEE and other viruses carried by mosquitoes by using insect repellents, wearing protective clothing, and by reducing the mosquito population around their homes.

She advises people to:

  • Wear shoes, long pants with bottoms tucked into boots or socks, and a long-sleeved shirt when outdoors for long periods of time, or when many mosquitoes are most active (between dusk and dawn).

  • Use mosquito repellent according to label directions when outdoors for long periods of time and when mosquitoes are most active. .

  • Empty pails, swimming pool covers, flower pots and other containers of standing water around the home and yard. .

  • Remove all discarded tires from around your property..

  • Replace or repair broken screens.

For more information about EEE and other viruses that are transmitted by mosquitoes, call the Oswego County Health Department at 349-3564 or 1-800-596-3200, ext. 3564, or visit the New York State Department of Health.

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