GURNEE — Village officials went on the offensive Thursday night against mosquitoes carrying the West Nile virus.
After being told one of the mosquito pools — a grouping of up to 50 mosquitoes — collected in the village tested positive for West Nile virus, officials authorized Clarke Outdoor Spraying of Roselle to conduct villagewide spraying Thursday night and early today.
The spraying took place in conjunction with treatments in Warren Township, Park City and Third Lake and was the second communitywide treatment of the season. Gurnee also has used ongoing larval control and adult control treatments.
Health officials have said the West Nile virus has been prevalent in the area this summer with the risk heightened by dry conditions.
As of Thursday, the Illinois Department of Public Health reported 37 counties in the state have West Nile virus present.
Eleven human cases of West Nile Virus have been reported in DuPage, Cook, and most recently in the Lake County portion of Buffalo Grove. In addition to the human case, over 50 pools of mosquitoes and three birds have tested positive for West Nile virus in Lake County this year.
West Nile virus is transmitted through the bite of a mosquito that has picked up the virus by feeding on an infected bird. Common West Nile virus symptoms include fever, nausea, headache and muscle aches. Symptoms may last from a few days to a few weeks.
However, four out of five people infected with West Nile virus will not show any symptoms. In rare cases, severe illness including meningitis or encephalitis, or even death, can occur. People older than 50 are at higher risk for severe illness from West Nile virus.
Residents should contact the Lake County Health Department West Nile Virus Hotline at (847) 377-8300 to report dead birds and Clarke Mosquito Hotline at (800) 942-2555 to report areas of stagnant water in roadside ditches, flooded yards, backyard catch basins and similar locations that may produce mosquitoes.