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Environment and Outdoors

EEE Found in Three More York County Mosquito Pools

AUGUSTA, Maine - Maine health officials say the sometimes-fatal virus known as EEE - or Eastern equine encephalitis - has been found in three additional groups of mosquitoes in York County, and in an emu in Cumberland County.

Officials with the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention says it's the fourth time the virus has been found in mosquito pools in this year in York County. The emu that tested positive for EEE in Cumberland County was located in the Sebago Lake area, and had not vaccinated against the disease, officials say. The virus is usually fatal in emus, as well as in horses, llamas, alpacas and ostriches.

In New Hampshire, a mule in the town of Candia has also tested positive for the disease, according to The Associated Press. Last month, a Conway, NH resident contracted the virus, the first confirmed human case in that state in five years. In Maine, officials say, no human cases of EEE have been reported.

In humans, symptoms of EEE include a high fever, severe headache, stiff neck and sore throat. It can occasionally cause seizures and coma that can be fatal.

EEE is transmitted to  humans through bites from infected mosquitoes. State officials are urging people to wear long sleeves and long pants, and use an EPA approved insect repellent, to protect against mosquito bites.