The Anne Arundel County Department of Health is warning Maryland residents that mosquitoes in two parts of the county have tested positive for West Nile virus.
Officials said mosquitoes caught on July 11 were the first positive mosquitoes identified this year. No cases have been reported across the county, according to a health department news release.
Maryland’s Department of Agriculture is expected to spray the areas near where these mosquitoes were found using an EPA-approved mosquito control option on Sunday after 7:30 p.m. Those areas include portions of Crain Highway and Davidsonville Road. Affected communities include Amberfield, Lake Louise and the Northwest Crofton Community District.
Anyone planning outdoor activities is discouraged from going out while the spraying takes place in those areas.
The West Nile virus can be spread by infected mosquitoes, which can transmit the virus to humans and other animals they bite. While most people don’t get sick, the department said roughly 1 in 5 patients “develop symptoms like headache, fever, muscle and joint aches, nausea and fatigue.”
“The current warm weather and high humidity provides ideal conditions for mosquito activity and West Nile virus transmission,” the department said.
Last year, an adult in the Baltimore metropolitan area tested positive for the disease, according to the Maryland Department of Health.
Pets, such as cats and dogs, can also contract the virus if bitten by an infected mosquito, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
You can avoid a potential bite from these bloodsucking pests by staying indoors from dusk till dawn, while mosquitoes are active; wearing long sleeves and pants; removing standing water where mosquitoes can lay eggs; keeping swimming pools clean and chlorinated; using repellents or mosquito nettings when outdoors; and ensuring that door and window screens are in good repair.
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