According to South Dakota epidemiologist Lon Kightlinger the first case of West Nile virus this summer has now been detected.  Davison County is the location where a patient over age 60 tested positive for the virus.

Kightlinger says although most who have the virus have mild flu-like symptoms, certain patients can become gravely ill, including the possibility of death. To lesson your chances of contact with mosquitoes that could carry the virus, Kightlinger has several suggestions:

  • Apply mosquito repellents (DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535) to clothes and exposed skin. Limit exposure by wearing pants and long sleeves in the evening.
  • Limit time outdoors from dusk to dawn when Culex mosquitoes, the primary carrier of WNV in South Dakota, are most active.
  • Get rid of standing water that gives mosquitoes a place to breed. Regularly change water in bird baths, outside pet dishes, and drain water from flower pots and garden containers.
  • Support local mosquito control efforts.

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