Dallas County Sees Far Fewer WNV-Infected Mosquitoes This Year

Dallas County has four times the number of mosquitoes than it did last year but far fewer are infected with West Nile virus.

Zachary Thompson, county health director, told county commissioners on Tuesday morning that the county has seen only 45 positive traps this year, compared to about 200 at this time last year.

"While we're not out of the woods yet, it's nothing compared to last year," he said.

Dallas County stays in touch with each of its cities weekly, and ground spraying for mosquitoes has taken place all over the county.

But concern remains high for residents of University Park, where the most recent of the county's three West Nile virus human cases lives.

"I mean, we had some deaths last year in Highland Park," said Barbara Clark, saying she is "extremely concerned."

"The mosquitoes are bad, and I do believe the mosquitoes are carrying the disease. ... I feel like a sitting a duck," she said.

University Park began spraying for mosquitoes in April, targeting schools, alleys and parks. The city also sprayed the night it found out about the human case.

Dallas County began aerial spraying at about this time last year, during the worst outbreak of West Nile virus in the nation. But county health officials say it is a different story this year.

"We haven't even discussed aerial spraying," Thompson said. "I want to put it into context -- we've advised all cities ... to prepare if we need to do aerial spraying."

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