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Be Safe

Mosquitoes Bite into Summer Fun

"Vector-borne disease" is the term commonly used to describe an illness caused by an infectious microbe that is transmitted by a blood-sucking arthropod from an infected vertebrate (e.g., bird, rodent, deer or human) to a susceptible person by a blood-sucking arthropod. There are more than 55 mosquito species native to Virginia. Mosquitoes can carry and spread diseases such as West Nile virus, eastern equine encephalitis, La Crosse encephalitis, and St. Louis encephalitis.

What you need to know:

  • Most people bitten by mosquitoes do not get sick, even if the mosquito is infected with a virus. Most people who do get sick usually suffer a mild flu-like illness.
  • People over the age of 50 are at greatest risk of serious illness, such as encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) or meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord).
  • The best way to control mosquitoes is by eliminating their breeding places.
  • Turn over or remove from your yard containers where water collects, such as old tires, potted plant trays, buckets and toys.
  • Clean roof gutters and downspout screens.

Last Updated: 07-30-2011

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