Chatham County Mosquito Control reported finding West Nile Virus (WNV) in mosquitoes in midtown Savannah as well as a significant increase in WNV in the mosquito population in eastern Chatham County. This is in addition to previous activity detected in eastern and southeastern parts of the county. Residents are encouraged to remain vigilant about preventing mosquito breeding and protecting themselves from mosquito bites.
WNV is transmitted by the bite of infected mosquitoes. About 80 percent of people infected with WNV will not show any symptoms at all; however, cases can range from mild to severe. Mosquitoes that carry the West Nile Virus are more likely to bite during the evening, night, and early morning.
- Chatham County Mosquito Control will continue to take steps to reduce the mosquito population but county residents also play a big role in that effort. Residents are strongly encouraged to drain, fill, or get rid of items that hold water in yards and neighborhoods and keep vegetation cut low to prevent landing sites for adult mosquitoes. In addition, use EPA-registered insect repellents with 20-30 percent DEET when outside.
Remember in 5Ds of mosquito bite prevention can also help prevent mosquito bites and breeding:
- Dusk/Dawn – Avoid dusk and dawn activities during the summer when mosquitoes are most active.
- Dress – Wear loose-fitting, long sleeved shirts and pants to reduce the amount of exposed skin.
- DEET – Cover exposed skin with an insect repellent containing the DEET, which is the most effective repellent against mosquito bites.
- Drain - Empty any containers holding standing water - buckets, barrels, flower pots, tarps - because they are breeding grounds for virus-carrying mosquitoes.
- Doors – Make sure doors and windows are in good repair and fit tightly, and fix torn or damaged screens to keep mosquitoes out of the house.
Chatham County Mosquito Control is actively treating all areas of Chatham County for mosquitoes. Residents should expect to see Mosquito Control’s low flying, yellow helicopters on a regular basis throughout the county.