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First Positive Test For West Nile Virus
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A barn owl found in the Lathrop area has tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV) and is the first confirmed case in San Joaquin County this year.

Officials with the San Joaquin County Mosquito and Vector Control District confirmed that the owl tested positive.

"To avoid West Nile virus, it is important that residents of San Joaquin County protect themselves from mosquito bites," said Aaron Devencenzi, Public Information Officer of the District. "Equally important is to drain standing water from their property. Recent rainfall potentially will provide habitat for mosquito development as the temperatures begin to increase."

In response to the detection of WNV, the District will expand surveillance and control of local mosquito populations on all private and public lands within San Joaquin County. Mosquito control activities include: making recommendations to property owners on methods to reduce mosquito breeding conditions, educating the public on mosquito prevention techniques, including the use of repellants, introducing mosquitofish to ponds, ditches, and other aquatic sites, and spraying areas where mosquitoes are found.

Residents are encouraged to call the District with concerns or to request service. Many mosquitoes can be a result of broken pipes under buildings, deferred maintenance of a neighbor's property, vacant or foreclosed property, or even roadside drainage ditches. Key to reducing large mosquito populations in the summer is early prevention.

To request District service, call (209) 982-4675, 1-800-300-4675 or visit the District website at