Livermore News

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West Nile Virus in Livermore

July 29, 2014

The Alameda County Mosquito and Abatement District has received confirmation from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) of a West Nile virus-positive group of mosquitoes in southeastern Livermore. An ongoing mosquito surveillance and larvicide program has been intensified in the area.

CDPH reports the two species of mosquitoes in the county capable of transmitting the virus prefer to feed on birds, but people can become infected when a mosquito bites an infected bird and then a person.

The symptoms of West Nile Virus include fever, headache, tiredness, body aches and swollen lymph glands and can last from a few days to weeks. Some 80 percent of those who are infected by West Nile Virus show no symptoms, according to Ericka Pan, the communicable disease director of Alameda County Public Health Department. Most of the rest have relatively mild, temporary symptoms.

The virus is most active in the Bay Area from May through October, according to the CDPH. Residents are asked to reduce the risk of contracting mosquito-borne diseases by dumping or draining untreated standing water, adding mosquitofish to standing water such as fish ponds or water troughs, and avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are present, especially at prime mosquito hours from dusk to dawn. If required to go outdoors, the CDPH website suggests, wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants and using repellents that contain DEET, Picaridin or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus.

Please report all dead birds and squirrels to the California Department of Public Health at 1-877-968-BIRD (2473) or at westnile.ca.gov. The CDPH issues pick-up requests to Alameda County Mosquito Abatement District and generates state-wide West Nile virus-positive reports.

If you have questions regarding mosquito abatement activities in your area, contact the Alameda County Mosquito and Abatement District at 510-783-7744.