Jackson County bird tests positive for West Nile Virus

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JACKSON COUNTY, Mich. (WLNS) – A bird in Jackson County has tested positive for the West Nile Virus (WNV,) reports the Jackson County Health Department.

While there are no positive cases of WNV in Jackson County, 28 cases in humans have been found in Michigan.

This positive case is the first discovery of WNV in any species in Jackson County.

“This recent laboratory confirmation of West Nile Virus serves as an indicator that the virus is active in the birds and mosquitoes in Jackson County,” said Don Hayduk, Environmental Health Division Director in a press release. “Since we have yet to have a hard frost and temperatures are still warm, mosquito activity is still occurring and the risk of contracting WNV still exists.”

The Jackson County Health Department issued the following guidance for avoiding WNV and other arboviruses spread by mosquitos.

  • Apply insect repellent to exposed skin when you go outdoors. The most effective repellents contain DEET (N.N-diethyl-m-toluamide).
  • Use caution when applying repellent to children under 12 years of age. Read and follow directions
  • indicated on the product label.
  • Spray clothing with repellents containing DEET, because mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing.
  • Consider staying indoors between dusk and dawn, which is peak mosquito biting time. Avoid activities in areas where mosquitoes are plentiful.
  • Fix or install window and door screens to keep mosquitoes out of buildings.
  • Eliminate standing water in your yard. Empty water from mosquito breeding sites, such as flower pots,pet bowls, swimming pool covers, buckets, barrels, and similar items in which mosquitoes can lay eggs.

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