Health officials: Mosquitoes carrying West Nile Virus found in Oklahoma County

File photo of a mosquito

OKLAHOMA CITY – Summer is almost here, and health officials in Oklahoma County are warning residents about the dangers posed by a pesky pest.

The Oklahoma City-County Health Department says that experts have confirmed several samples of mosquitoes have tested positive for carrying West Nile Virus.

“The recent rain and warmer weather provide a favorable environment for mosquitoes to carry the virus. A few basic steps like removing any sources of stagnant water in flower pots, pet bowls, chimeneas, old tires, wheelbarrows, birdbaths and even kid’s toys will cut down on the mosquito population. Survey your property after a rain to get rid of mosquito habitats,” Phil Maytubby, OCCHD Public Health Protection Director, said.

Epidemiologists say you can also use microbial larvicides to kill larvae in water that can’t be drained.

All residents are urged to use the  3-D’s and a “P” of mosquito safety:

  • DRAIN standing water on your property so mosquitoes won’t breed
  • Use insect repellant that contains DEET on your clothes
  • DRESS in long sleeves and pants and spray repellant on your clothes.
  • Protect – limit exposure and check window screens

Health officials say West Nile Virus is the most common mosquito-borne disease in Oklahoma, and it can be deadly in seniors.

Symptoms of West Nile Virus include fever, headache, body ache and a rash.