Concerns about the spread of West Nile Virus continue to grow in New York. Samples have found several areas near Buffalo testing positive for the disease. The findings have health officials suggesting people avoid any and all contact with mosquitos. Here are some ways to protect yourself.

You may recall several areas in Onondaga County reported similar findings last summer in the Towns of Cicero, Salina, and DeWitt. There are some simple ways to protect yourself; wearing shoes, socks, hats, long pants, and a long-sleeved shirt when outside for a period of time.

If you want to use repellents, find ones containing DEET, Picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, or IR3535. When protecting the kids, place the repellent on your hands and then rub it on your child. Don't use it on your face and wash skin and clothing once back inside.

The NY Department of Environmental Conservation also suggest eliminating breeding grounds around your home with these guidelines:

*Throw away outdoor containers, ceramic pots or containers that hold water
*Remove all tires from your property
*Drill holes in the bottoms of recycling containers that are kept outdoors
*Clean clogged rain gutters and make sure they continue to work properly
*Change water in bird baths at least every four days
*Clear vegetation and debris from the edges of ponds
*Clean chlorinated swimming pools, outdoor saunas, and hot tubs
*Drain water from pool covers
*Use landscaping to eliminate low spots where standing water accumulates

Learn more about protecting yourself and how to properly use repellants at the DEC's website.

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