West Nile virus found in Erie County mosquitoes

Jul 8, 2015

The first discovered instance of a mosquito bearing the West Nile virus this year has been reported in Erie County.

The state Health Department regularly conducts testing on mosquito pools and made the analysis. There has not been a human case of West Nile in the county since October 2012.

In a prepared statement, Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein issued a reminder to residents to minimize exposure to mosquitoes, especially at dusk and dawn.

“We have not had a confirmed case of West Nile Virus in Erie County since October 2012 and we want to ensure it stays that way," Burstein said.

Residents should wear as much clothing as possible, and to use an effective repellant of 25 to 30 percent of DEET on exposed skin. Minimizing breeding spots for the insects could also help, such as dumping standing water and cleaning clogged gutters.

"Mosquitoes are an unavoidable summertime nuisance. By taking a few simple steps, you can reduce your risk of being bitten and possibly contracting a mosquito-borne disease like WNV," Burstein added.