Mosquitoes test positive for West Nile Virus in St. Louis County

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO - Mosquitoes carrying the West Nile Virus have been discovered in St. Louis County, the county's department of public health said Tuesday.

The county did not specify where the mosquitoes were caught.

No human cases of West Nile Virus have been reported in Missouri so far this year.

The virus is spread through the bite of a mosquito that had been feeding on an infected bird. Common symptoms include, but are not limited to: fever, headache, muscle aches, and nausea. These symptoms can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks; however, four out of five people infected with the virus will not show any symptoms at all.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, humans can transmit the virus to one another in four different ways: blood transfusion, organ transplant, exposure in a laboratory setting, and from mother to baby during pregnancy, delivery, or breastfeeding.

The St. Louis County Department of Public Health says residents can take some steps to reduce the opportunity for mosquitoes to breed by eliminating all sources of standing water around a home. This means draining buckets, cans, garbage bins, tire swings, bird baths, dog dishes, child swimming pools, and other objects; anything that can collect and retain water over time.