Kings public health officials say mosquitoes test positive for West Nile Virus

By The Leader Staff
Kings public health officials say mosquitoes test positive for West Nile Virus

The Kings Mosquito Abatement District (KMAD) has confirmed that thirteen (13) mosquito pools have tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV) throughout different Kings County locations. The positive mosquito samples were collected from the western side of the District along the Kings River, between Excelsior Avenue to the North and Highway 198 to the South.

Additionally, positive samples were collected close to Lemoore and Hanford and near the Santa Rosa Rancheria.

“In addition to West Nile, mosquitoes can carry other viruses such as St. Louis Encephalitis, Dengue, Malaria, and Zika virus,” said Michael Cavanagh, KMAD District Manager. “Kern County recently reported its first human case of St. Louis Encephalitis, and we anticipate that the number of those cases will increase throughout Kings County and other counties affected by the recent flooding.”

KMAD officials are working with the Kings County Department of Public Health (KCDPH) to spread awareness regarding mosquitoes' potential risk, particularly for individuals at higher risk of developing serious symptoms. “The detection of West Nile Virus in mosquitoes in Kings County, as well as the reporting of a human case of St. Louis Encephalitis in Kern County, are warnings that residents should take all precautions to avoid being exposed to any of these viruses,” said Rose Mary Rahn, KCDPH Director.

The most effective way to control mosquitoes is to dump and drain containers that may hold water each week. Residents are encouraged to check bird baths, buckets, water bowls, trash cans, discarded tires, or drainage ditches with standing water. 

Practicing the “Three D’s” can also help protect individuals against mosquito bites.

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