Public Health – Dayton & Montgomery County announced Monday that a pool of mosquitoes has tested positive for the West Nile Virus in a wooded area at Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark, 1301 E. Siebenthaler Ave. in Dayton.
This marks the first positive test in the region this summer, Bill Wharton, spokesman for Public Health said. Statewide, Franklin County also has had one mosquito pool test positive in the Columbus area.
“We know West Nile is here,” Wharton said. “People should take precautions against mosquito bites.
The city of Dayton and Five Rivers MetroParks contract with Public Health to treat areas where mosquitoes test positive for the virus. Wharton said the area will be sprayed with insecticide this week.
“It seems like this happens on almost an annual basis, that we test positive for West Nile at some point in the summer,” Amy Forsthoefel, marketing research manager for Five Rivers MetroParks said. “We have a long-standing agreement with Public Health to deal with it.”
County health departments that relied on the Ohio Department of Health to test locally trapped mosquitoes for the West Nile Virus are on their own this season because of budget cuts. Public Health — Dayton & Montgomery County purchased about $2,000 in testing supplies this summer. The county began trapping on June 3 and has collected about 4,100 mosquitoes.
There were 121 reported cases of West Nile Virus in Ohio in 2012, including seven deaths. There have been no human cases reported in the state so far this year. Tessie Pollack, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Health, said the state typically doesn’t see human cases until late August.
If you are going to be outside at dawn, dusk or during nighttime hours when many mosquitoes carrying West Nile tend to be active, use an insect repellent, wear a long sleeve shirt and pants. Also limit use of fragrance or perfumes.