News Releases > Health department to spray for mosquitoes on Wednesday - West Nile virus found in mosquito samples collected in Fort Wayne and Leo-Cedarville
ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (September 2, 2008) – For the second week in a row, mosquito samples have tested positive for the West Nile virus and the health department is planning targeted spraying to reduce the threat.
The areas to be sprayed on Wednesday Sept. 3 include the 800 block of Delaware Avenue in Fort Wayne and the 15000 block of Beulah Drive in Leo-Cedarville. Spraying in a half-mile radius of those areas will begin around 7:30 p.m. if weather permits. Spraying will not occur when the temperature is below 60 °F, wind speeds exceed 10 mph or it is raining.
The affected area in Fort Wayne extends north to Charlotte Avenue, east to Forest Park Boulevard and Lake Avenue, southeast to Columbia Avenue, and west to Clinton Street. In Leo-Cedarville, the area is bounded to the north by Wilderness Creek Drive, east to Schwartz and Grabill roads, south to Amstutz Road and Pioneer Trail and west to the Lion’s Gate and Pioneer Village neighborhoods. Maps are included with this release and available on the department’s Web site at www.fw-ac-deptofhealth.com.
West Nile virus is usually transmitted to humans by a mosquito that has first bitten an infected bird. The virus often causes a mild form of illness characterized by fever, headaches, body aches, swollen lymph glands or a rash. In rarer cases, the virus may cause meningitis, muscle paralysis or sometimes-fatal encephalitis. People age 50 and older are at greatest risk for serious illness. There is neither a specific treatment nor a vaccine against the disease.
The health department uses dead bird sightings and laboratory testing of mosquitoes to help track the virus and to make decisions regarding appropriate control measures. So far this summer, 20 counties in Indiana have reported West Nile virus activity in birds or mosquitoes. There has been one confirmed human case in Indiana and that was in Perry County.
Residents who do not wish to have pesticide sprayed in front of their homes may call (260) 449-7459 and leave their name and address. The trucks will stop spraying one house before and begin again one house after the "no-spray" address. The department will try to honor all no-spray requests received by 2 p.m. Wednesday.
Spraying will not fully eliminate the presence of mosquitoes. Residents are also urged to protect themselves by wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, by applying an insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus to clothes and exposed skin, and by eliminating standing water around their homes.