CONCORD, CA – The Contra Costa Mosquito & Vector Control District (District) reports another dead bird and one more group of mosquitoes have tested positive for West Nile virus (WNV) in Contra Costa County.
The dead bird is the first dead bird reported from San Pablo and the mosquitoes were collected from a trap in the town of Oakley. There are now two dead birds and eight groups of mosquitoes that have tested positive for WNV so far this year in Contra Costa County.
Certain birds carry WNV. Once a mosquito bites an infected bird, the mosquito can become infected. Mosquitoes can spread the virus when they bite another bird or person.
As we enter the waning days of summer, this is the time of year when WNV infections tend to peak as long as the weather stays very warm. And with a dead bird from West Contra Costa County and more mosquitoes from the eastern portion of the county testing positive for WNV this week alone, they serve as an important reminder for all Contra Costa County residents to take precautions to reduce the risk of WNV and practice the 4 Ds.
- Dump or Drain any amount of standing water in your front or backyard
- Defend yourself by wearing an EPA recommended mosquito repellent
- Report Dead Birds because they are often the first sign of WNV in a particular area
“Because the risk of WNV typically peaks this time of year, it is very important for county residents to dump out any standing water on residential properties to deny mosquitoes places to develop from egg to biting adult, protect yourself by wearing repellent just before and just after sunrise and sunset when mosquitoes are present, and report dead birds because that helps the District focus on specific areas for surveillance and control efforts,” said Steve Schutz, Ph.D., Scientific Program Manager.
The District recommends residents use an EPA-registered insect repellent with one of the following active ingredients to prevent mosquito bites:
- Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus.
Always follow the instructions on the label when using insect repellent.
Contra Costa County residents can request the District’s mosquito service for residential property by calling (925) 685-9301 or online. County residents can also report dead birds by phone at (877) WNV-BIRD (968-2473) or online.
Since 2005, 74 people in Contra Costa County have been diagnosed with West Nile virus. In 2006, two people died from the disease. For current human case information, please contact Contra Costa Health Services at 888-959-9911.
Contra Costa Mosquito & Vector Control District, an independent special district and public health agency, is located at 155 Mason Circle in Concord. Contact the District to report mosquito problems online or at (925) 685-9301.