West Nile Virus found in Grand Forks

GRAND FORKS, N.D. (Valley News Live) - The city of Grand Forks says a pool of mosquitoes collected Wednesday has been identified as having West Nile virus.

The cities of Grand Forks and East Grand Forks are urging citizens to take extra precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.

The mosquito most common for transmitting West Nile virus is the Culex tarsalis. This mosquito is most active just before sundown and throughout the night into the early morning hours.

To help reduce your risk of getting West Nile virus, the Health Department recommends the following protective measures:

• Use insect repellent that contains DEET.
• Limit outdoor activities between dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
• Wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts when possible.
• Eliminate standing water around homes (e.g., buckets, flowerpots, old tires, wading pools and birdbaths).

John Bernstrom with the City of Grand Forks says the city's Mosquito Control operates as if the virus is always present and therefore will not be making major changes to the daily operations of mosquito control.