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Mosquito-borne diseases spreading in New Hampshire

Monitor staff
Published: 10/16/2019 6:23:30 PM

The number and type of mosquito-borne diseases in New Hampshire continues to expand, with Wednesday’s announcement that a second state resident has tested positive for Jamestown Canyon virus – a reminder that cooler temperatures are no protection from biting insects.

The news of the infected Laconia resident comes on the heels of last week’s warning that EEE, another potentially dangerous disease transmitted by mosquito bites, is proving widespread in New Hampshire this year, having shown up in a Francestown horse and a host of mosquitos in Candia.

This is also a dangerous time of year for ticks, which feed before winter, transmitting viruses like the one that causes Lyme disease.

“Biting mosquitoes will continue to be a disease concern until there are two statewide hard frosts,” said the state Department of Health and Human Services in a press release about Jamestown Canyon virus. “Tick bites remain a concern while temperatures are above freezing and ticks are not covered by snow. Residents and visitors to New Hampshire should continue to protect themselves and their family members.”

Jamestown Canyon virus is a mosquito-borne pathogen that circulates widely in North America primarily between deer and mosquitoes. Reports in humans have been increasing over the last several years. This is New Hampshire’s eighth case of it since the first report in 2013.

“Most illnesses caused by JCV have been mild, but moderate-to-severe central nervous system involvement has been reported, including fatal infections,” DHHS said.

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