Atlantic County has reported finding two mosquito samples in Northfield that have tested positive for West Nile Virus. These are the first positive mosquito samples found in Atlantic County this year, but health officials note it is not unusual to find positive samples during the summer and fall.
Representatives from the Atlantic County Office of Mosquito Control collected the samples last week from Birch Grove Park and the1200 block of Zion Road in Northfield. County public health and mosquito control officials are conducting mosquito surveillance, implementing additional control measures and providing educational materials to area residents and businesses.
West Nile Virus is carried by infected mosquitoes and can be transmitted to birds, animals and humans. Health officials encourage residents to reduce their risk and the spread of West Nile Virus by reducing their exposure to mosquito bites by following these tips:
* Use an insect repellent whenever going outdoors. Repellents are an important tool to assist people in protecting themselves from mosquito-borne diseases. The Centers for Disease Control recommends the use of products containing active ingredients which have been registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for use as repellents applied to skin and clothing and approved for efficacy and human safety when applied as directed. Be sure to follow product directions carefully and consult with your child’s doctor prior to using on children.
* Rid properties of mosquito breeding grounds by draining standing water. Mosquitoes do not travel far from where they breed. Buckets, bird baths, flower pots and other containers can hold water and provide an ideal environment for mosquitoes. Be sure to empty these containers regularly.
* Clean clogged gutters; check and repair screen doors.
For more information about West Nile Virus, visit the Atlantic County Web site at: www.aclink.org/publichealth or call the Division of Public Health at (609) 645-5971. If you need assistance in removing stagnant puddles or floodwater from your property, call the Office of Mosquito Control at (609) 645-5948.