West Nile Virus Found in Halton Hills Mosquitoes


If you love the outdoors, you'll want to be in the know.

A batch of mosquitoes trapped this week in Halton Hills has tested positive for West Nile virus (WNV).

This is the ninth batch of WNV positive mosquitoes for Halton this year. The other batches of mosquitoes testing positive for WNV this year were in Burlington, Oakville and Milton.

"Halton is committed to being safe and healthy and reducing West Nile virus in our communities through both education and preventative programs like larviciding," said Halton Region’s medical officer of health Dr. Hamidah Meghani.

"Until the hard frosts of fall set in, people should continue to protect themselves against mosquito bites and remove mosquito breeding sites."

Urban areas are more likely to have mosquitoes that carry WNV.

The types of mosquitoes that transmit WNV to humans most commonly breed in urban areas in places that hold water such as bird baths, plant pots, old toys and tires.

Residents can take the following steps to protect themselves and their families from mosquitoes:

Cover up. Wear light-coloured, long-sleeved shirts and pants with tightly-woven fabric.

Use an approved insect repellent, such as one containing DEET or Icaridin.

Avoid being outdoors from early evening to morning when mosquitoes are most active and likely to bite, as well as at any time in shady, wooded areas.

Make sure your window and door screens are tight and without holes, cuts or other openings.

Reduce mosquito breeding sites around your home by getting rid of all water-filled containers and objects, where possible. Change the water in bird baths at least once per week.

A map showing the locations of standing water sites that have had larvicide applied this year is available here.

Residents can phone 311 or e-mail wnv [at] halton [dot] ca to report standing water at public facilities.

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