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Suffolk reports 9 more mosquito samples testing positive for West Nile virus

An undated file photo of a mosquito.

An undated file photo of a mosquito. Photo Credit: Getty Images

Suffolk County is reporting nine new mosquito samples that tested positive for West Nile virus, bringing the year's total to 80, health officials said Friday.

The new samples -- all Culex pipiens-restuans -- were collected Aug. 11 to 14 in Huntington, Copiague, West Babylon, Bay Shore, Holbrook, Farmingville, Selden and Fire Island's Watch Hill, officials said.

Two new birds have also tested positive, bringing the total to seven, with the most recent two collected in Stony Brook and Smithtown.

Nassau was reporting 20 positive mosquito samples, a health department spokeswoman said on Thursday.

Some mosquito bites can transmit West Nile to humans, with mosquitoes picking up the virus by feeding on infected birds.

No human cases of West Nile have been reported yet this year on Long Island.

"The confirmation of West Nile virus in mosquito samples or birds indicates the presence of West Nile virus in the area," said Dr. James L. Tomarken, county health services commissioner.

"While there is no cause for alarm, we urge residents to cooperate with us in our efforts to reduce the exposure to the virus, which can be debilitating to humans."

In some cases, the virus causes serious neurological illnesses that can lead to health conditions or death.

Nassau had four reported human cases of West Nile and no deaths last year, with Suffolk reporting one case and no deaths.

Last year, 2,205 cases of human infection were reported in the United States, resulting in 97 deaths, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Residents are advised to eliminate stagnant water where mosquitoes breed in and around their homes; to minimize outdoor activities and cover their skin in the evening and night when mosquitoes are most active; and to use mosquito repellent outdoors.

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