Tulsa health officials confirmed Friday morning that a sample group of mosquitos tested positive for West Nile virus.
Information provided by the Tulsa Health Department stated the group was collected from an area in north Tulsa. A map shows the location is found near 66th Street North and 76th Street North and between Peoria and Lewis Avenue.
"Our mosquito surveillance program is vigilant in testing for West Nile virus," stated Bernard Dindy, Tulsa Health Department environmental health services program manager. "But more importantly, we work proactively to control the mosquito population by larviciding to kill the eggs before they become adults. We routinely test 50-60 pools weekly, and once a positive sample is identified we are aggressive in spraying the area and informing the public so they can protect themselves."
Officials with the THD added that there have been no confirmed cases of WNV in humans here in Tulsa County. Residents should remain cautious since the months of July through October usually bring the highest risk for exposure in Oklahoma.
Information from the THD states that WNV is spread through the bite of an infected mosquito, which feeds on infected birds and then transmits the virus when biting humans or other mammals. Humans that have contracted WNV will experience an onset of fever, headache and dizziness.
"Persons over the age of 50 are at greatest risk of developing severe neurological disease from WNV infection," information provided states. "Some of the neurological effects of WNV may be permanent."
Some precautions you can take to prevent contracting WNV include:
- Use insect repellent containing DEET on exposed skin and clothing when you go outdoors
- Repair or install window or door screens to keep mosquitos out of home
- Empty animal water bowls and clear up stagnant water near your home