2nd Georgetown mosquito sample in a week tests positive for West Nile

Georgetown pesticide spray area in response to positive West Nile sample (WCCHD Map)
Georgetown pesticide spray area in response to positive West Nile sample (WCCHD Map)

GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) — For the second time in a week, a mosquito trap sample in Georgetown has come back positive for West Nile Virus.

The sample was collected last week in the Villages of Berry Creek neighborhood on the north side of the city, according to the Williamson County and Cities Health District. Last week, a mosquito sample collected north of downtown Georgetown tested positive for West Nile.

The positive test was confirmed in lab results received Monday. The sample was collected last Wednesday, Oct. 18. The species that tested positive for West Nile, Culex quinquefasciatus, also known as the Southern house mosquito, has a flight range of about a mile. There were 44 Culex mosquitoes in the sample. The number of mosquitoes with the West Nile Virus in the sample is not known, the WCCHD said.

The city will spray in the area of the trap since children and families will be out for trick-or-treating this week (map of spray area below). After 9 p.m. on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, a permethrin-based insecticide will be sprayed along the street and in public parks, weather permitting.

Permethrin is a synthetic derivative of pyrethrum, which comes from Chrysanthemum flowers. There are currently no reported human cases of West Nile in Williamson County. A spokesman for the district says it’s a good idea to keep children and pets indoors during spray times after 9 p.m. The permethrin targets mosquitoes and should have not health effects on animals or people.

What you can do

Mosquitoes breed in standing or stagnant water. Eliminating places where mosquitoes can breed and reducing the chances of mosquito bites are the most effective lines of defense against exposure to West Nile Virus. As part of its Fight the Bite campaign, the Health District recommends the “3 Ds” of mosquito safety.

  • Drain standing water in flower pots, pet dishes, or clogged gutters so mosquitoes don’t have a place to breed and treat water that can’t be drained;
  • Defend by using an EPA-approved insect repellent; and,
  • Dress in long sleeves and pants when outdoors.

For more information, go to the WCCHD website at www.wcchd.org or visit the Texas Department of State Health Services West Nile website at www.txwestnile.org.

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