Mosquitoes near the Kettle Falls Day Use and Group Site Campground at Lake Roosevelt have tested positive for West Nile virus.

West Nile, which cycles between mosquitoes and birds in nature, is passed on to humans through a mosquito bite. Conditions this summer at Lake Roosevelt have been optimal for mosquitoes, who are drawn to hot, humid environments. Visitors and park staff alike have been dealing with extraordinarily large populations, especially in the north district near Kettle Falls, WA.

The National Park Service is developing a plan to treat and control the populations, but it is always best to be prepared.

Protect yourself from West Nile, especially at dawn and dusk, by wearing loose fitting long-sleeved shirts and pants, and be sure to use a mosquito repellent. When choosing a repellent, always look for products registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, follow label instructions carefully, and take special care when applying to children.

Check screens on tents and windows and doors on trailers to make sure they are working properly.

If you think you have been exposed to West Nile, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, or the WDOH website for guidance about symptoms. For specific questions on test results, contact Julie Graham of the Washington Department of Health at 360-236-4078.