West Nile virus found in Boston

Mosquitoes carrying the West Nile virus have been found in Boston for the first time this summer, public health officials have announced.

Found in the northern part of Dorchester, Mass., the infected mosquitoes are capable of spreading the virus to humans through bites. To date, no human cases of West Nile virus have been reported in Boston or anywhere else in Massachusetts this year, reports.

To fight the spread of mosquitoes, the city of Boston has been placing pesticides in catch basins since June. Trucks have also been used in some neighborhoods to conduct mosquito spraying.

State health officials, in a separate action, told that aerial spraying in southeastern Massachusetts to prevent the spread of equine encephalitis has eliminated 80 percent of all mosquitoes and 90 percent of mosquito breeds that bite mammals.

The last diagnosed human case of EEE Massachusetts occurred in 2008, but there were 13 reported cases that resulted in six deaths from 2004 through 2006.

Specialists told that, to avoid mosquito bites, people should stay inside from dusk to dawn, which is peak mosquito-biting time. For outdoor activity at night, long sleeves, long pants and socks should be worn.

Additionally, bug repellents can also provide protection, though DEET repellent should not be used on infants younger than two months of age.