A mosquito pool in nearby Lowndes County recently tested positive for EEE, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health’s South Health District – the district that includes Tift County.

We want to remind all South Georgians to take precautions to prevent mosquito-borne illnesses.

Mosquitoes are not only in backyards but just as likely hovering around doorways and near kitchen sinks and bath tubs.

Mosquitoes are like people during summertime. 

They are seeking cooler places to be. 

They hover around standing water. 

They seek shade. 

They are more likely to be abundant in the early morning and evening hours.

Their bites are often described as pesky, but they can be deadly. Mosquitoes transmit not only Eastern Equine Encephalitis but West Nile Virus, too.

Traditionally, sach summer, health officials report area animals that have contracted EEE.

People should still take precautions, according to Health District South.

Lowering the mosquito population reduces the chances of a person becoming infected by such viruses.

– Use insect repellent containing DEET, picardin, IR3535 or oil of lemon eucalyptus on exposed skin and/or clothing.

– Wear long sleeves and pants when weather permits.

– Have secure, intact screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out.

– Eliminate mosquito breeding sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets, barrels, wading pools and other containers. Drill holes in tire swings so water drains out.

– Be sure to use repellent and wear protective clothing from dusk to dawn or consider indoor activities during these times due to peak mosquito biting hours.

“Taking the necessary steps to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites is the best defense we have against mosquito-borne illnesses,” said Kenneth Lowery, district epidemiologist. “While we do see mosquito-borne illnesses in our district every year, that does not mean that we should become complacent about taking precautions.”

For more information on mosquito borne illnesses visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website at www.cdc.gov.

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