Homeowners Combat Mosquitoes Amid Zika Virus Concerns

In light of the Zika virus, health officials in Tarrant and Dallas counties are urging homeowners to prepare for mosquito season.

Both counties have had confirmed cases of the virus, which is spread through a mosquito common to North Texas -- the Aedes.

“It doesn't take much water at all for a mosquito to start reproducing,” said Trey McCord, who owns Mosquito Squad in Dallas.

Given the warm temperatures, McCord’s work started a month earlier than usual this year.

Since February, customers have been calling to have their properties assessed and treated for mosquitoes, some residents requesting weekly sprays.

In between visits, McCord advises them to regularly remove any standing water from their backyards.

“Water in gutters, water in drains,” he explained. “Any little bit can increase the mosquito activity in our area.”

Tarrant County recently confirmed its third case of the Zika virus; Dallas County has had four cases.

Both counties have released reminders to residents to cover up, use bug spray and to be vigilant of potential breeding zones around their homes.

“If we do nothing, there are mosquitoes everywhere,” said homeowner, Valerie Herrin.

Herrin’s Lake Highlands home is adjacent to a flood plain that attracts mosquitoes every summer.

After weekly treatments failed to deter them, she installed an automatic spray system that turns on twice a day.

“Two times in the morning and twice in the evening,” Herrin said. “I don't want to have to worry about rubbing my kids down every single time I walk outside.”

Tarrant County’s health department released a video to its residents to help with treatments at home.

"We're expecting to have a big growth year this year," said McCord.

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