HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) -- Alabama joins several other states with a confirmed case of the mosquito-carried Chikungunya virus.
Madison County Health Department Public Health Environmentalist Cheryl Clay says while the virus isn't as prevalent here as in other states, it has the potential to grow.
Clay says the species of mosquito that carry the virus has a large population in our area.
"That's the Asian Tiger mosquito and it usually breeds in containers and things in people's yards," Clay says.
Symptoms of the virus include fever and severe joint pain.
The virus is not usually fatal, but Clay says the symptoms are very uncomfortable.
She says there are several things you can do to keep the mosquito population under control."Dump out anything in your yard that has water in it," Clay says, "Even a teaspoon of water can breed mosquitoes, magnolia leaves on the ground can breed mosquitoes."
Clay says other typical preventative measures will also help protect you, including staying inside during dusk and dawn hours.
For more information on how to prevent mosquito populations from growing and for information on the health department's control measures click here.