A mosquito pool in Madison County tested positive for eastern equine encephalitis, the first positive test this year, according to the Madison County Health Department.
The positive test came from a trap site on Moore Road in the Town of Sullivan, just east of the Cicero Swamp and south of Bridgeport. The sample was collected on July 21.
The mosquitoes that tested positive for EEE are primarily bird-biting species, but human-biting species were also found in this location.
??Residents should take steps at home to lower the chance of being bitten by mosquitos,?? said Madison County Public Health Director Eric Faisst. ??Avoiding mosquito bites is the best thing you can do. When outside, wear insect repellent according to package directions, stay away from areas with large numbers of mosquitoes and limit outside activity between dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active. It is imperative for people over 50 years of age and younger than 15 years of age to avoid mosquito bites.??
The Madison County Health Department has launched enhanced surveillance of the mosquito population. They are also reaching out to at-risk residents as well as large animal vets, equine owners and horse stables. ??Horses are very sensitive to EEE and monitoring both human and animal health are key elements of our surveillance program,?? says a Health Department release.
Right now, aerial spraying is not being planned.
The Health Department recommends these steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes:
-Apply insect repellents that contain DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, and follow label instructions.
-Make sure that doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep out mosquitoes and repair or replace screens with tears or holes.
-Eliminate standing water and containers that can hold water from around the home.
-Turn over wheelbarrows and wading pools when not in use.
-Clean, maintain and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs and drain pool covers. Report neglected swimming pools to your local codes enforcement officer.
-Change the water in birdbaths and horse troughs regularly, at least twice a week.
-Wear long sleeve shirts, long pants, socks and footwear if you must be outside.
-Use mosquito netting over infant carriers, cribs, and strollers.
For more information on EEE or West Nile Virus, call the Madison County Health Department at 315-366-2361 or visit their website here.