The Macon County Health Department (MCHD) has received confirmation of the first mosquito batch testing positive for West Nile Virus. This batch was collected by the Macon Mosquito Abatement District (MMAD) in a roaming trap. Adult samples were RAMP (Rapid Analyte Measurement Platform) tested by the District. At the time of this release, there is not a positive human case in Macon County.
MMAD has tested 162 samples with 1 positive result. The risk of infection is currently low. However, due to the recent rainfall, it is likely there will be an increase in the mosquito population. Residents should check their property and drain/dump any standing water. It is important to continue to check your property to help reduce breeding sources as this will decrease the mosquito population long- term.
Mosquitoes are attracted to standing water, bare skin, and dark clothing. It is recommended to follow the four D’s to help keep mosquitoes away:
Drain: Empty standing water every 5-7 days including watering dishes, bird baths, etc.Dress: Wear long sleeves, long pants, and light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
Defend: Properly apply an EPA-registered repellent such as DEET, picaridin, IR 3535 or oil of lemon- eucalyptus. Insect repellents are not recommended for children younger than 2 months of age. Consult your physician before using repellents on young children or infants.
Dusk/Dawn: Avoid peak mosquito activity at dusk and dawn, when possible.
The MCHD also conducts surveillance of West Nile Virus in dead birds. Birds must be fully intact without decomposition or bugs. If you find a dead bird, please call the Health Department at (217) 423-6988 ext. 1134 to report it.