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New Orleans: West Nile

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    Posted: June 23 2018 at 2:08pm

West Nile virus found in New Orleans

Updated ; Posted

West Nile virus has been found in mosquitoes collected in Orleans Parish, the city's Mosquito, Termite and Rodent Control Board said Friday (June 22).

City officials are urging residents to protect themselves from the virus by removing containers that hold standing water, which can become mosquito breeding sites. City crews will also continue truck and aerial spraying and apply larvicide to storm drains.

Residents can also avoid getting bitten by mosquitoes by limiting outdoor activities between dusk and dawn, using insect repellents, and maintaining screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out of homes.

No West Nile cases in humans have been reported in New Orleans this summer, city officials said.

West Nile is a mosquito-transmitted pathogen that primarily infects birds. On occasion, bird-biting mosquitoes can bite humans and transmit the virus.

The virus can be dangerous, especially for people 65 years and up or in people who are immunocompromised. Symptoms in humans are flu-like, though most people who have a West Nile infection don't show symptoms. 

Here's more guidance from New Orleans city officials about West Nile virus:

Protecting Yourself

Reduce mosquito exposure by limiting outdoor activities between dusk and dawn. Use air-conditioning and make sure window and door screens are in good repair to prevent mosquitoes from getting inside.  If outside for long periods of time, wear long-sleeved shirts and pants. The CDC recommends using repellents containing EPA-registered, active ingredients including DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon-eucalyptus.When using repellent, always follow the recommendations on the product label. Click here for more information on protecting yourself from West Nile virus

Protecting Your Home

Eliminate standing water around your home, where mosquitoes breed. Remove trash and clutter; dispose of discarded tires and containers that can hold water. Turn over wading pools, buckets, trash cans, children's toys or anything that could collect water.Change water weekly in containers that cannot be removed, such as pet dishes or bird baths. Scrub the sides of the containers each we to remove the eggs that have been deposited. Rain barrels and other water collection devices must be screened, and collected water should be used within one week.Aerate ornamental pools, fountains and sugar kettles or stock them with fish. Report illegal dumping, water leaks and unattended swimming pools by calling 311. Call 311 or email to report mosquito problems. 

Tires are easily filled with water by rain and collect leaf litter, providing an ideal breeding site for mosquito larvae. Eliminating scrap tire dumps will eliminate a prolific mosquito habitat.

Residents can place up to four tires weekly, stacked curbside along with their household trash.Tires in front of abandoned lots will not be collected; they must be moved in front of a residence with curbside collection.Residents can also bring up to four tires to the City's Recycling Drop-off Center on the second Saturday of each month at 2829 Elysian Fields Ave. between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m.


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