Mosquito bites can lead to nasty "bugs"

Mosquito bites can lead to nasty "bugs"
Posted on 06/13/2012

The approaching summer brings thoughts of fun outdoor activities with family and friends. The South Salt Lake Valley Mosquito Abatement District would like to remind everyone that along with these outdoor activities comes the possibility of being bitten by mosquitoes, some of which transmit West Nile Virus, St. Louis and Western Equine Encephalitis or Dog Heartworm.


West Nile Virus is transmitted by infected mosquitoes. A mosquito becomes infected by feeding on a wild bird that has WNV in its blood. The virus develops inside the mosquito’s body, and the mosquito then transmits the virus in its saliva when it bites a second person or animal.

Symptoms of West Nile Virus include: fever, headache, body aches, rash (generally but not always), swollen lymph glands, neck stiffness, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, paralysis and, rarely, death.

You can help protect yourself and others by:

  • Eliminating any standing water in your yard, neighborhood or business property (ie. old cans, tires, buckets, tarps); empty children’s toys such as buckets, wagons, and wading pools; clean out bird baths, wheelbarrows, clogged roof drains and gutters; avoid over watering lawns and gardens; fill tree holes and stumps with sand; and dump horse troughs weekly.
  • Stay indoors whenever possible (especially between dusk and dawn).
  • When outdoors wear light-colored, loose-fitting clothing that covers as much skin as possible.
  • Apply repellents containing DEET or Picaridin (check label for proper applications).
  • Repair holes in window and door screens.
  • Stock ornamental ponds with mosquito fish (they can be obtained free of charge from the mosquito abatement district).

If you have questions or concerns, please see the South Salt Lake Valley Mosquito Abatement District website at www.sslvmad.org, the Utah Mosquito Abatement Association website at www.umaa.org, or the Salt Lake Valley Health Department at www.slvhealth.org.