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Contact: Michael Bilecki, 631-687-4760
Patchogue, NY - Fire Island National Seashore announced today that mosquito monitoring efforts will be increased at Watch Hill in response to the detection of West Nile Virus (WNV) in a mosquito sample collected September 9. The National Park Service collected the mosquitoes as part of its weekly Mosquito Monitoring Program. The program is a collaborative effort between the Seashore and Suffolk County Department of Health Services, which announced the positive WNV result on September 18.
WNV is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. Visitors should take precautions to reduce exposure to the virus by avoiding areas with high densities of mosquitoes. If contact with mosquitoes is unavoidable, it is advisable to:
- Minimize outdoor activities when mosquitoes are active.
- Wear protective clothing including long sleeved shirts, socks, and long pants.
- Use an effective insect repellent, such as one containing at least 30% DEET.
- Close all windows and doors and check screens.
If threats to human health are identified, actions to protect the public may include control methods such as larviciding, spraying, or area closures. Fire Island National Seashore works closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), Suffolk County Vector Control, Suffolk County Department of Health, and local Fire Island and Long Island municipalities to determine the best course of action to protect residents, visitors, and employees of the Seashore.