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Hint of West Nile Virus in Ayer

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health announced last week that West Nile Virus was found in a mosquito in Ayer, according to the town. This year, 5,496 mosquito samples were tested for the virus; 290 came back positive. Ayer had one sample test positive this year, the town said in a statement.

   The virus, which is most commonly transmitted to humans by a mosquito bite, poses a more severe threat to people over the age of 50. The mosquitos that carry WNV are common throughout the state.

   How to Avoid Avoid Mosquito Bites

 Be Aware of Peak Mosquito Hours - The hours from dusk to dawn are peak biting times for many mosquitoes. Consider rescheduling outdoor activities that occur during evening or early morning. If you are outdoors at any time and notice mosquitoes around you, take steps to avoid being bitten by moving indoors, covering up and/or wearing repellant.

Clothing Can Help reduce mosquito bites. Although it may be difficult to do when it’s hot, wearing long-sleeves, long pants and socks when outdoors will help keep mosquitoes away from your skin.

  Apply Insect Repellent when you go outdoors. Use a repellent with DEET or oil of lemon eucalyptus according to the instructions on the product label. DEET products should not be used on infants under two months of age and should be used in concentrations of 30% or less on older children. 

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