In addition to WNV, mosquitoes also carry the virus capable of
transmitting other forms of encephalitis such as Lacrosse and St.
Louis. The Zika virus has also been reported but is still considered
a low risk for transmission from mosquito to human since the primary
mosquito that carries the virus is not found in Illinois. For
further details regarding Zika virus and how it can be transmitted,
you can refer the Logan County Department of Public Health (LCDPH)
website. The department will continue to monitor activity as it
relates to the WNV, Zika virus and all mosquito-related infections.
Avoiding mosquitoes and eliminating breeding sites are prime methods
of prevention. To reduce the risks of becoming infected by
mosquitoes, it pays to “fight the bite” by taking the following
- Avoid the outdoors when mosquitoes are most active,
especially between dusk and dawn.
- When outdoors, wear shoes, socks, long pants and a
long-sleeved shirt. Mosquitoes are attracted to dark colors so
light-colored clothing is preferred.
- Apply insect repellent which includes DEET, picaridin or oil
of lemon eucalyptus. Contact a physician before using repellents
on infants and always follow the label instructions.
- Eliminate ways for mosquitoes to gain entry into your home.
Be sure screens that protect doors and windows are
tight-fitting, free of tears and are in good repair.
- Eliminate all sources of standing water that can support
mosquito breeding such as flower pots, clogged gutters, old
tires, unused wading pools and other receptacles. Bird bath
water should be replaced weekly.
- To report public tire dump sites, abandoned pools, areas of
standing water in roadside ditches, flooded yards or similar
conditions which may produce mosquitoes, you can contact your
local municipality or the LCDPH.
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If you are bitten by a mosquito, there is no reason to be tested for WNV since
illness related to mosquito bites are rare. However, if you develop symptoms
such as high fever, confusion, muscle weakness or severe headaches, you should
see your doctor.
Due to the lack of a State budget in Illinois, the LCDPH will not be able to
collect and ship dead birds to test for WNV until funding is available through
the Illinois Department of Public Health. If or when the program begins, the
public will be notified of the details and instructed on how to report a dead
If you have questions regarding prevention of mosquito-related diseases or would
like more information, you can contact the Logan County Department of Public
Health at 217-735-2317 or visit the health department website at
Information Source: IL Dept. of Public Health
[Don Cavi, MS, LEHP, Public Health
Administrator, Logan County Department of Public Health]