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First bird test positive for West Nile Virus; barn owl found in Lathrop
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STOCKTON - San Joaquin County Mosquito & Vector Control District (District) confirmed that a barn owl found in the Lathrop area (zip code 95330) has tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV).

This is the first sign of WNV activity in San Joaquin County in 2010.

“To avoid West Nile virus, it is important that residents of San Joaquin County protect themselves from mosquito bites. Equally important is to drain standing water from their property. Recent rain fall potentially will provide habitat for mosquito development as the temperatures begin to increase”, said Aaron Devencenzi, Public Information Officer of the District.

In response to the detection of WNV, the District will expand surveillance and control of local mosquito populations on all private and public lands within San Joaquin County. Mosquito control activities include: making recommendations to property owners on methods to reduce mosquito breeding conditions; educating the public on mosquito prevention techniques, including the use of repellants; introducing mosquitofish to ponds, ditches, and other aquatic sites; and spraying areas where mosquitoes are found.

Residents are encouraged to call the District with concerns or request service. Many mosquitoes can be a result of broken pipes under buildings, deferred maintenance of a neighbor’s property, vacant / foreclosed property, or even roadside drainage ditches. Key to reducing large mosquito populations in the summer is early prevention.

To request District service, call (209) 982-4675, 1-800-300-4675 or visit the District website at