The first evidence of active West Nile virus in San Joaquin County this year was found in a bird northwest of Stockton.
A June 4 news release from the San Joaquin County Mosquito & Vector Control District said the finding by the mosquito-borne disease surveillance program would prompt the district to increase its activities to control adult mosquitoes.
Periods of hot weather, such as the area has experienced lately, speed up both the mosquitoes’ life cycle and the replication of the virus within their bodies.
Avoiding mosquito bites reduces one’s chance of getting West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne diseases. One way to do that is to take some simple precautions:
• Get rid of all standing water outdoors that could support mosquito eggs and immature mosquitoes. Mosquitoes can breed in puddles or small amounts of water gathered in containers such as flowerpots, toys or clogged gutters.
• Apply an insect repellent when heading outdoors. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention recommend looking for a repellent made with DEET, Picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535.
• Avoid spending time outside at dawn or dusk when mosquitoes are most active.
• Wear protective clothing outdoors, including long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
• Make sure windows and screens fit tightly and doors don’t have gaps.
Anyone who notices a large infestation of mosquitoes or is bothered by daytime-biting mosquitoes should call the San Joaquin County Mosquito & Vector Control District, 982 4675 or 800-300-4675, or make a report at www.sjmosquito.org
Those who find dead birds can report them at 877-968-2473 or www.westnile.ca.gov.
People can look online to see when and where the district plans ground spraying or aerial spraying to control mosquitoes, or sign up to get email alerts.
For more information: San Joaquin County Mosquito & Vector Control District, 209-982-4675.