The first human case of West Nile virus this year in Columbus has been reported.

A 77-year-old woman, whose name and condition were not disclosed by Columbus Public Health officials, has been hospitalized with the virus.

Jose Rodriguez, spokesman for the health agency, said it has been an active year for mosquitoes, which primarily are responsible for transmitting the disease.

Rodriguez said several pools of standing water throughout the city have tested positive for West Nile virus.

Health officials encourage people to remove areas of standing water, the natural habitat for mosquitoes.

Although daytime temperatures have been mild and nighttime temperatures expected to dip into the 40s this week, mosquitoes remain active until the first hard freeze, which generally kills them, Rodriguez said.

“Just because the temperature goes down doesn’t mean they aren’t going to be around,” Rodriguez said.

gseman@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekGary