KANKAKEE — One pool of mosquitoes collected from a trap in Kankakee has tested positive for West Nile virus, the Kankakee County Health Department reported Friday.
This is the first pool of mosquitoes to test positive for the virus this year in Kankakee County. So far in 2021, the Illinois Department Public Health has reported 34 counties with positive West Nile virus cases and one human case, although human cases are believed to be under-reported.
West Nile virus is transmitted through the bite of the Culex pipiens or northern house mosquito, which picks up the virus by feeding on an infected bird.
Common symptoms include fever, nausea, headache and muscle aches. Symptoms could last from a few days to a few weeks. Four out of five people infected will not display symptoms.
In rare cases, severe illness or even death can occur. Individuals older than 60 or with weakened immune systems are at higher risk for severe illness.
Precautions against West Nile recommended by the health department include the three “R’s” of reduce, repel and report: Reduce opportunities for bugs and standing water, repel insects when outdoors and report locations of stagnant water.
Additional information can be found at bit.ly/IllinoisWNV.