Chatham County Mosquito Control has confirmed that samplings of mosquitoes collected in western Chatham County (Pooler area) have tested positive for West Nile virus (WNV). This indicates that WNV is actively circulating in local mosquito populations this year. Mosquito control personnel are surveying all areas of Chatham County and scheduling control operations as required. No human cases of WNV have been confirmed in any Coastal Health District counties, including Chatham.
WNV is transmitted by the bite of infected mosquitoes and can cause mild to serious illness. Mosquitoes that carry the West Nile Virus are more likely to bite during the evening, night, and early morning. The Chatham County Health Department and Chatham County Mosquito Control urge residents to take appropriate precautions now and throughout the summer to minimize mosquitoes around their property.
Residents are always encouraged to follow the 5Ds of mosquito bite prevention:
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, flower pots – 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.