VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Enjoy the hot weather but put on the bug spray!
Doctors are advising you about an increase of mosquitos here in BC and the possibility some could be carrying West Nile Virus (WNV).

“This year with the warm weather that we’ve started to see, finally, in the last few weeks, we’ve started to see an increase in the numbers of mosquitos that can carry West Nile Virus,” says Dr. Bonnie Henry with the BC Centre for Disease Control.

More mosquitos have been noticed particularly in the Fraser Valley and the Okanagan.

Henry says no positive cases of West Nile have surfaced in BC yet, but they have been reported in Washington State, Oregon, Manitoba and Ontario.

“They’ve had some positive mosquitos and also positive human cases,” Henry notes. “So people in BC, if you’re travelling to those parts of the country and to the United States as well, where they’re starting to see a lot more activity, then you need to, as well, be aware about West Nile Virus and make sure you take precautions.”

West Nile Virus is transmitted from birds to people through mosquito bites. It can cause fever, fatigue and swollen lymph glands. In rare cases, people can develop swelling around the brain, paralysis and it can occasionally lead to death.

“There is no vaccine for this virus and there’s no specific treatment for it either, so that’s why prevention is so important,” Henry adds.
She recommends people spray on federally-registered mosquito repellant, which contain DEET or lemon-eucalyptus oil, and wear long sleeves and pants, especially at night.