Mosquitoes infected with Jamestown canyon virus found in Michigan

Six Michigan residents were sickened with the virus last year

click to enlarge Mosquitoes infected with the Jamestown Canyon virus were found in Michigan. - frank60 / Shutterstock
frank60 / Shutterstock
Mosquitoes infected with the Jamestown Canyon virus were found in Michigan.

The first known cases of the Jamestown Canyon virus in Michigan were detected in mosquitoes collected in Bay County, state health officials said Thursday.

The virus is spread to people through bites from infected mosquitoes, usually from late spring through mid-fall.

Initial symptoms include fever, headache and fatigue. In rare case, the virus can cause severe disease in the brain and spinal cord.

Six Michigan residents were sickened with the virus last year.

In the summer in Michigan, people are also at risk of other mosquito-borne illnesses, including Eastern Equine Encephalitis and West Nile virus.

The best way to protect against the viruses is to avoid mosquito bites, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS).

“It only takes one bite from an infected mosquito to cause a severe illness,” Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, MDHHS chief medical executive, said in a statement. “We urge Michiganders to take precautions such as using an EPA-registered insect repellent when outdoors, avoiding areas where mosquitoes are present if possible, and wearing clothing to cover arms and legs to prevent bites.”

Mosquitos are infected when they feed on deer and other animals that have the virus.

Health officials recommend residents follow these steps:

• Apply insect repellents that contain the active ingredient DEET.

• Wear light-colored, long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outdoors.

• Maintain windows and door screenings to keep mosquitos outside.

• Remove water from mosquito-breeding sites around the home, such as buckets unused kiddie pools, and old tires.

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About The Author

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling is an award-winning investigative journalist who operated Motor City Muckraker, an online news site devoted to exposing abuses of power and holding public officials accountable. Neavling also hosted Muckraker Report on 910AM from September 2017 to July 2018. Before launching Motor City Muckraker,...
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