Mosquito carrying West Nile virus found in Twin Falls County

Posted at 5:49 AM, Jun 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-27 07:49:31-04

TWIN FALLS COUNTY, Idaho — The Twin Falls County Pest Abatement District (TFCPAD) has collected at least one mosquito carrying West Nile virus in a trap along the Jerome and Twin Falls county line.

South Central Public Health District (SCPHD) has joined TFCPAD in warning residents to act now to avoid catching the disease.

“Overall, mosquito trap numbers in the county are low,” said Brian Simper, TFCPAD Manager. “But this positive serves as a good reminder that West Nile Virus is out there, and the public can take steps to reduce mosquito habitat and avoid mosquitoes when they are most active at dusk and dawn.”

Public health officials are reminding residents to protect themselves and their families from mosquito bites by:

  • Using insect repellant with an EPA-registered active ingredient like DEET, expecially at dawn and dusk when mosquitos are most active.
  • Wear loose-fitting clothes with long sleeves and pants.
  • Installing screens on all windows and doors
  • Checking for, and draining, any standing water around your home every three to six days. This includes clogged rain gutters, pools, bird baths, old tires and other outside water features.

“West Nile virus can be nasty and, in some cases lead to deadly complications,” said Logan Hudson, SCPHD Nurse Program Manager. “When the Pest Abatement District warns us about a trapped mosquito carrying the disease we know it’s possible West Nile could spread quickly through south-central Idaho. Preventing mosquito bites may be a hassle, but it’s worth it.”

Typical symptoms of the virus include fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea and rash. People over age 50 with serious medical conditions are at a greater risk for serious illness from the virus. More severe infections may involve the central nervous system. For more information, head to the CDC website.