West Nile virus confirmed in Brown County

BROWN COUNTY, Wis. - Brown County Health and Human services - Public Health Division, City of De Pere Health Department, and Oneida Health Center report a dead crow found in Brown County has tested positive for West Nile Virus Tuesday.

This is the first bird that tested positive for West Nile virus in Brown County since surveillance for the mosquito-transmitted virus began May 1.

West Nile virus is spread to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitos acquire the virus by feeding on infected birds.

Brown County residents should be aware of West Nile virus and take some simple steps to protect themselves against mosquito bites.

 

The Health Departments recommend the following:

- Limit time spent outside at dawn and dusk, when mosquitos are most active

- Apply insect repellent to clothing as well as exposed skin since mosquitos may bite through clothing

- Make sure window and door screens are in good repair to prevent mosquito entry

- Properly dispose of items around your property that hold water, such as tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots, or discarded tires

- Clean roof gutters and downspouts for proper drainage

- Turn over wheelbarrows, wading pools, boats, and canoes when not in use

- Change the water in bird baths and pet dishes at least every three days

- Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas, and hot tubs; drain water from pool covers

- Trim tall grass, weeds, and vines since mosquitos use these areas to rest during hot daylight hours

- Landscape to prevent water from pooling in low-lying areas

 

The majority of people (80%) who are infected with West Nile virus do not get sick. 

Those who do become ill, usually experiencing mild symptoms such as fever, headache, muscle ache, rash, and fatigue. 

Less than 1% of people infected with the virus get seriously ill with symptoms that include high fever, muscle weakness, stiff neck, disorientation, mental confusion, tremors, confusion, paralysis, and coma.

Older adults and those with compromised immune systems are at greater risk of developing central nervous system illness that can be fatal.

For more information on West Nile virus, click here


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