Twenty-two Additional Mosquito Samples Test Positive for West Nile Virus
Suffolk County Health Services (SCDHS) Commissioner James L. Tomarken announced that 22 additional mosquito samples have tested positive for West Nile virus. The mosquito samples, collected between July 17 and July 20, were from locations in Northport (4), South Huntington, Huntington, Holbrook, Bay Shore (2), Gardiner Park in Islip, Brentwood (2), Blydenburgh Park in Smithtown (1), Southampton (2), Holtsville (2), Yaphank, Deer Park, Dix Hills, Southold, and Mastic Beach. To date this year, 79 mosquito samples — all Culex pipiens-restuans — and eight birds have tested positive for the virus.
New York State is currently investigating one human case that is being considered as probable for West Nile virus. The individual was hospitalized for several days and has fully recovered. Confirmation of West Nile virus will be dependent on the results of further testing.
“Though the number of mosquitoes testing positive is historically high for this time of year, we cannot predict if the numbers will continue to be high,” said Dr. Tomarken. “There are many factors, such as weather, that affect mosquito population and activity. “Given that the numbers are high and we are finding samples in virtually all parts of the county, we ask that residents be especially vigilant about reducing their exposure to mosquitoes whenever they can.”
Dr. Tomarken asks residents to reduce the mosquito population around homes, by eliminating stagnant water where mosquitoes breed. The county offers an informative bulletin entitled “Mosquitoes and Mosquito-borne Illnesses,” which contains tips on personal protection and repellents. To download the brochure, visit http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/Portals/0/Documents%20and%20Forms/Health%20Services/Seasonal/Mosquito%20Brochure.pdf
Dead birds found on area properties may indicate the presence of West Nile virus in the area. To report dead birds, call the West Nile virus hotline in Suffolk County at 631-787-2200 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. To report mosquito problems or stagnant pools of water, call the Department of Public Works’ Vector Control Division at 631-852-4270.
For medical questions related to West Nile virus, call 631-853-3055.