Tarrant County

Tarrant County Officials Report High West Nile Mosquito Activity, Issue Public Health Warning

Protection from mosquitoes important this summer according to health officials

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Tarrant County Public Health officials issued a public health warning Thursday due to record-high levels of positive West Nile virus mosquito activity, according to Tarrant County Public Health.

The first West Nile virus human case and death in Tarrant County was reported on July 21.

"We are continuing to see rapid increases in mosquito infection rates in Tarrant County, which means we have more human risk for West Nile Virus," said Tarrant County Public Health Director Vinny Taneja. "To prevent outbreaks of West Nile, it's very important that people remember to always use an EPA-approved repellent and wear long sleeves and pants when they go outside."

Control measures to reduce the mosquito population include increased mosquito surveillance in areas of positive traps and increased ground spraying in areas where spread of West Nile Virus is likely, according to Tarrant County Public Health.

Tarrant County is spraying for mosquitoes Thursday and Friday as part of those control measures.

How to Protect Yourself From Mosquito Bites

  • Dress in long sleeves, pants when outside: For extra protection, spray thin clothing with repellent.
  • DEET: Make sure this ingredient is in your insect repellent.
  • Drain standing water in your yard and neighborhood: Mosquitoes can develop in any water stagnant for more than three days.

It has been recommended in the past that to avoid mosquito bites you should avoid being outdoors during Dusk and Dawn (the 4 Ds). While this is true for mosquitoes that commonly carry the West Nile virus, other types of mosquitoes that are more likely to carry Zika, dengue and chikungunya are active during the day. When outdoors, no matter what time of day, adjust your dress accordingly and wear insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus as your first line of defense against insect bites.

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