West Nile found in Cook Co. mosquitoes
CHICAGO (AP) — Illinois public health officials say two samples from mosquitoes in Cook County are the first in the state to test positive for West Nile virus this year.
Public Health Director Damon Arnold says the positive samples were collected on May 11 in the northern Chicago suburbs of Evanston and Wilmette. Last year, the first positive samples were found on May 23.
Humans contract West Nile through mosquito bites. The virus caused 44 U.S. deaths in 2008, including one in Illinois. The state saw a total of 20 cases.
Illinois has set aside nearly $3 million this year for West Nile prevention. Officials are asking residents to drain any standing water so mosquitoes don’t have places to breed.