The Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District has reported at mosquitoes collected in a trap in Hacienda Heights have tested positive for both the West Nile Virus and St. Louis Encephalitis.
"This detection should serve as a reminder that WNV is endemic in Los Angeles County,'' said Susanne Kluh, director of Scientific-Technical Services at GLACVCD. "As temperatures increase, so do mosquito populations and disease risk, which poses a serious public health threat in our communities.''
"Our agency will continue monitoring disease activity and treat affected areas,'' said Mary-Joy Coburn, director of community affairs for GLACVCD. "Although the positive mosquitoes were collected in one area at this time, all L.A. County residents should take precautions, like wearing insect repellent and eliminating standing water around the home.''
The late rainfalls coupled with warmer temperatures have contributed to increased mosquito activity in Southland communities, according to the Vector Control District. In addition, standing water like puddles and water in planters can provide a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.
The West Nile Virus is a scary disease. There is no cure, one in 150 patients will require hospitalization, and symptoms include fever, headache, body aches, nausea, or a skin rash. Severe symptoms include high fever, muscle weakness, neck stiffness, coma, paralysis, and possibly death. Prevention suggestions include repellents with DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus, and long sleeves help keep mosquitoes away.
From NBC Los Angeles :
The GLACVCD urged residents to take an active role in reducing the threat of WNV in their neighborhoods by taking the following steps:
- eliminate standing water in clogged rain gutters, rain barrels,
- discarded tires, buckets, watering troughs or anything that holds water for more than a week;
- ensure that swimming pools, spas, and ponds are properly maintained;
- change the water in pet dishes, birdbaths and other small containers weekly;
- request mosquitofish from your local vector control district for placement in ornamental ponds;
- wear insect repellent when outdoors where mosquitoes may be present
- report neglected or green-water swimming pools in your neighborhood to your vector control district.