For Immediate Release
August 31, 2001
Dr. David McKeown
Medical Officer of Health
Region of Peel
905-791-7800, Ext. 2215
Nine Mississauga Birds Confirmed Positive for West Nile Virus
(Brampton) - Eight crows and one blue jay from south Mississauga have now been confirmed positive for the West Nile virus. These nine birds include the three birds presumed positive on August 24.
To date across Ontario, 29 birds are confirmed positive for the virus. In addition to the nine birds in Peel Region, there are thirteen confirmed positive birds in Windsor-Essex, four in Toronto and three in Halton. There have been no cases of the West Nile virus in humans in Ontario.
"The risk of human infection remains low," says Dr. David McKeown, Medical Officer of Health for the Region of Peel. "Mosquito activity has declined dramatically over the past few weeks, and we expect to see activity continue to decrease as the weather cools."
Peel Health is working closely with Health Canada and the Province to increase mosquito monitoring activities in Mississauga. Peel Health has been actively involved in a provincial surveillance program to detect the West Nile virus in birds since spring 2000.
Residents are reminded to take common sense precautions to reduce their risk of mosquito bites:
- Avoid areas with high mosquito populations.
- Wear light-coloured clothing, including long sleeves, pants and a hat, to cover exposed skin.
- Use a mosquito repellent containing DEET. For adults, look for repellents containing 35 per cent DEET. Children should wear a repellent with no more than 6 to 10 per cent DEET. Follow manufacturers' instructions carefully.
- Drain any areas of standing or stagnant water on your property. Remove old tires, turn over pails, toys and wheelbarrows, and frequently change the water in birdbaths. Also, keep your eavestroughs clear to avoid trapped water.
- Take extra precaution at dusk and dawn when mosquito activity is higher.
More information on West Nile virus can be found at www.peel-bugbite.ca or by calling Health Line Peel, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., at 905-799-7700. To report dead birds, call Health Line Peel at 905-799-7700.
Communication Services, 10 Peel Centre Dr., Brampton, ON L6T 4B9
Phone: 905-791-7800, Fax: 905-791-0595 , e-mail
Web site: http://www.region.peel.on.ca