Residents urged to take precautions against West Nile virus
Mesa County Health Department in partnership with Grand River Mosquito Control District (GRMCD) mosquito surveillance is reporting the first positive mosquito sample this season. To date, there have been no human cases of West Nile virus in Mesa County. Health officials are stressing the importance of taking the following personal protective measures to prevent West Nile virus infection.
• Use insect repellent that contains DEET, Picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus.
• Dress in long sleeves and pants when in areas where mosquitoes are active.
• Drain standing water on property.
• Avoid being outdoors at dusk and dawn; this is when mosquitoes are most active.
Steps to prevent mosquitoes from breeding and biting:
• Remove standing water from around homes and places of work.
• Check water in birdbaths, pots, pools, etc. weekly for mosquito larvae. Empty the water if they are present.
• Stock ornamental ponds, fountains and livestock water tanks with fish that eat mosquito larvae.
• Do not over-water lawns and gardens.
Eighty percent of people infected with West Nile virus exhibit no symptoms. Of the remaining 20 percent, symptoms can range from fever, extreme fatigue, nausea and vomiting to more serious symptoms including meningitis and encephalitis.
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The family of Rosie Ferrin has worked to clean up and make safe again the old schoolhouse in downtown New Castle. Ferrin died this summer and had owned the building that included classrooms turned into apartments for years.