Council discusses mosquito solutions

Staff Report

SYRACUSE — Work to remove mosquitoes potentially carrying the West Nile Virus was a topic of discussion on last week’s Syracuse Village Council meeting.

The standing water issue in the park area has been corrected, and the Health Department has procured larvaecide for additional preventative measures.

The village has followed the health department guidance regarding standing water, and the pool will be treated after its winterization. Fiscal Office Crystal Cottrill noted that any known standing water issues should be reported to the village.

Council members voiced concern about residents worried about their health.

Councilman David Poole has been in contact with both local and state health officials regarding the situation, and he was advised to wear long sleeves and bug spray when outdoors in addition to addressing the standing water.

As previously reported by The Daily Sentinel, a mosquito sampling was collected earlier in the summer with 6 of the 39 collected testing positive for the virus.

The health department did not specify the locations of the mosquitos, but a week following the release of information Syracuse Village Council addressed the matter at its August meeting. At the time, Mayor Eric Cunningham stated that the recommendation was for the digging out of the creek between London Pool and Marina Drive.

WNV is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes are carriers (“vectors”) that become infected when they feed on infected birds. Infected mosquitoes can then spread the virus to humans and other animals when they bite.

According to the ODH, approximately 80 percent of people who are infected with WNV will not show any symptoms at all, but there is no way to know in advance if you will develop an illness or not. Those who do develop symptoms usually do so between three to 14 days after they are bitten by the infected mosquito. Severe symptoms can include high fever, headache, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis. Milder symptoms include fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting and sometimes swollen lymph glands or a skin rash on the chest, stomach and back. Symptoms can last for a few days to as long as several weeks.

The most effective way to avoid West Nile virus or other mosquito-borne diseases is to prevent mosquito bites:

  • Use insect repellents when you go outdoors. The most effective repellent includes the active ingredient diethyltoluamide (DEET).
  • Wear long sleeves and pants from dusk through dawn when many mosquitoes are most active.
  • Install or repair screens on windows and doors. The mosquito commonly known as the ‘Northern House Mosquito’ are the main carrier of WNV.
  • Help reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home by eliminating the places mosquitoes use to lay eggs. Old tires, aluminum cans, buckets, neglected bird baths, stagnant swimming pools and clogged rain gutters are only a few places around a home that will hold water long enough to breed hundreds or even thousands of mosquitoes.

Staff Report