West Nile Virus Confirmed in Peterborough Mosquitoes

Peterborough Public Health is advising the public that mosquitoes in the City of Peterborough have tested
positive for West Nile virus (WNV). The mosquitoes were trapped from August 8th to the 11th, 2022.

This is the first positive mosquito pool found in Peterborough this year. According to Public Health Ontario, as
of August 6th, 2022 there have been 14 WNV positive mosquito pools identified in the province but no human
WNV cases. During the summer months and early fall, PPH sets traps weekly throughout the City and County
of Peterborough to gather mosquito specimens for WNV testing.

“Now that we’ve identified mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus in our area, it’s especially important that
residents take care to prevent mosquito bites,” said Joshua Laite, Vector-borne Disease Program. “This is a
good reminder for residents to get rid of any standing water in their yards and to take precautions to avoid
mosquito bites.”

Mr. Laite noted that the majority of WNV cases do not show symptoms. About 20% of infected people may
have a mild flu-like illness with fever, headache, and body aches, occasionally with a skin rash and swollen
lymph nodes or other non-specific symptoms that last several days. Other symptoms may include nausea,
vomiting, or eye pain. Less than one percent of infected people will develop neuro-invasive disease, with older
age groups and males disproportionately affected.

Although the risk of becoming infected is low, prevention against mosquito bites is the best protection.
Individuals can protect themselves from bites in several ways:
• Cover up when going outside between the hours of dusk and dawn. Remember to wear:
o a long-sleeved shirt or jacket and long pants (tucked into your socks for extra protection)
o light-coloured clothing so mosquitoes are easily spotted
o Wear special clothing that is designed to protect you from bugs when you know you’ll be
outdoors for an extended period of time
• Use insect repellant containing DEET. (DEET is a powerful chemical. Always read the label directions for
use. Or, ask your pharmacist for help when choosing a DEET product.)
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Peterborough Public Health is committed to providing information in a format that meets your needs.
To request information in an alternate format, please call us at 705-743-1000 or email info@peterboroughpublichealth.ca.
• Clean up:
o once a week, get rid of standing water around your home (mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant
water, even small amounts)
o keep bushes and shrubs clear of overgrowth and debris (adult mosquitoes like to rest in dense
shrubbery)
o turn your compost pile often

The City of Peterborough has historically used the application of larvicides in the catch basins in the City and
County. This is to help control the local population of mosquitoes to help protect the public from WNV.
For additional information on protection measures against West Nile virus such as reducing mosquito
breeding sites and the safe use of insect repellents, please visit http://www.publichealthontario.ca or http://www.peterboroughpublichealth.ca.

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