North Texas

Fort Worth Warns of ‘Boomer' Mosquito Season

All of the rain North Texas has seen in the last few weeks could lead to a problematic mosquito season. But it's still unclear if that means a worse West Nile virus season.

Fort Worth city leaders absolutely believe we will see more mosquitoes, because of the rains and the standing water and tall grasses the rain has generated.

Of course, the mosquitoes will emerge after the rain stops for an extended period, but it's not clear if a bad West Nile season will emerge as well, officials said.

"But I can tell you it's going to be a boomer year for the mosquitoes. We're already seeing that," said Code Compliance Director Brandon Bennett. "In comparison to the last four or five years, our traps are already capturing more mosquitoes."

Bennett said the city has already started its awareness campaign about how to prevent the spread of mosquito-borne viruses, like West Nile and chikungunya. And while wearing long sleeves all day and wearing repellents containing DEET remain important parts of the prevention process getting rid of standing water is the top priority.

"The most important thing, the number one thing that people can do to reduce the risk in their community, is to keep the water drained and then report pooling water," Bennett said.

The city will be proactive in getting rid of such standing water, be it on private or public lands. The UNT Health Sciences Center will continue to help the city in its monitoring program with 62 traps across Fort Worth, as the city wants everyone to be aware of what's coming after the storms.

"We are very worried about a higher than normal mosquito population this year. We really need people to pay attention," Bennett said.

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