West Nile season has arrived in McLean County.
McLean County Health Department Senior Sanitarian Angie Crawford says a mosquito pool east of Bloomington collected Aug. 1 from the 61705 area code has tested positive for the virus.
"People just need to start being diligent. When they go out they should apply bug spray, wear long pants, and watch the time of day they go out to avoid the times mosquitos are most active," said Crawford.
Last year there were 155 cases across the state. Six people died.
Cases of the virus peak in late summer and early fall, according to the health department.
There have already been two human cases of the virus in Illinois this year. The virus' symptoms can appear 13 to 14 days after an infection. Mild cases of WNV can cause a slight fever or headache. Severe infections can lead to high fever, disorientation, and even paralysis or death. Persons at highest risk for serious illness are young children, adults 50 years of age or older and people with compromised immune systems.
37 counties in Illinois have reported the presence of West Nile this year.
The health department urges people to report dead birds but not to touch them.
Crawford appear on GLT's Sound Ideas on Monday, Aug. 14.
You can also listen to GLT's full interview with Crawford:
WGLT depends on financial support from users to bring you stories and interviews like this one. As someone who values experienced, knowledgeable, and award-winning journalists covering meaningful stories in central Illinois, please consider making a contribution.