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Public health unit: residents should protect themselves against mosquitoes, West Nile virus

GUELPH - The recent barrage of wet weather could be a boon to the mosquito population this year.

So Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (WDGPH) is reminding the public to reduce the risk of mosquito bites and potential exposure to West Nile virus.

Mosquitoes lay eggs in standing water so the first line of defense is to eliminate mosquito breeding areas.

Public health is encouraging property owners to remove standing water anywhere it tends to collect. These locations include flower pots, bird baths, wheelbarrows, eaves troughs, rain barrels and tires.

The second line of defense is to reduce the risk of mosquito bites by wearing light-coloured pants and a long-sleeved shirt.

Health Canada recommends adults and children over six months of age use a mosquito repellent with DEET or icaridin. Avoid being outside at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes tend to feed.

“Some people when infected will experience flu-like symptoms and very rarely, in a few cases there is inflammation of the brain and spinal column which may result in permanent disability or death,” said Dr. Nicola Mercer, medical officer of health and CEO for WDGPH.

Adults over the age of 50 are most at risk of serious health effects.

To reduce the mosquito population in the region public health conducts an annual mosquito surveillance and larvicide program.

Property owners who have a catch basin on their property and would like to have it treated at no cost can call 1-800-265-7293 ext. 4753.

Visit for more information.


May 19, 2017


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