FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Connecticut Department of Public Health
August 3, 2010 Contact: William Gerrish
Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station
Contact: Dr. Theodore Andreadis
Hartford – The State Mosquito Management Program today announced that mosquitoes trapped in Bethel, Bridgeport, Meriden, Norwalk and Orange from July 22-27, 2010 have tested positive for West Nile virus (WNV). These are the first positive mosquitoes identified in these five towns by the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station (CAES) this year. Positive mosquitoes continue to be identified at sites in Stamford and West Haven. There have been no confirmed human WNV infections reported this season so far.
“Circulation of West Nile virus in mosquitoes continues to intensify,” said Theodore G. Andreadis, Ph.D., Chief Medical Entomologist, CAES. “Over the next several weeks, we will probably see infected mosquitoes in more Fairfield County towns and in other Connecticut counties as well.”
“Today’s announcement regarding West Nile virus positive mosquitoes underscores the importance for Connecticut residents to take necessary precautions to prevent mosquito bites,” said Department of Public Health (DPH) Commissioner Dr. J. Robert Galvin. “In previous years, most West Nile virus infections were acquired during August and September.”
Monitoring and risk assessment for WNV emphasizes mosquito trapping and testing results. The CAES maintains a network of 91 mosquito-trapping stations in 72 municipalities throughout the state. Mosquito traps are set Monday – Thursday nights and conducted at each site every ten days on a rotating basis. Mosquitoes are grouped (pooled) for testing according to species, collection site, and date. Each pool is tested for the presence of viruses of public health importance. Positive findings are reported to local health departments, in press releases and on the CAES web site.
For information on West Nile virus and what you can do to prevent getting bitten by mosquitoes, visit the Connecticut Mosquito Management Program Web site at www.ct.gov/mosquito.