West Nile Virus detected in Cedar Park mosquitoes

Lab at Department of State Health Services in Austin testing mosquitoes for Zika and other viruses. (KXAN Photo/Richie Bowes)
Lab at Department of State Health Services in Austin testing mosquitoes for Zika and other viruses. (KXAN Photo/Richie Bowes)

CEDAR PARK, Texas (KXAN) — A single sampling of mosquitoes in a Central Texas city tested positive for West Nile Virus, according to Cedar Park officials.

There are six traps throughout Cedar Park, and the mosquitoes that tested positive were collected from the one set up in the southwest part of the city, near the intersection of Cypress Creek Road and Sun Chase Boulevard. The insects can fly about a mile.

No human cases of the disease have been reported in the Cedar Park area and Williamson County has not had any cases since last fall. The test on these mosquitoes was conducted as part of a routine monitoring for Williamson County and Cities Health District’s mosquito management program.

Cedar Park is increasing its mosquito monitoring and testing, and increasing public outreach. It is reminding residents of the Three Ds:

  • Drain standing water outside to prevent mosquito breeding
  • Defend by using insect repellant
  • Dress in long sleeves and pants when outside

The city also uses a naturally-occurring bacteria to prevent mosquito breeding in standing water that can’t be drained. Anyone who knows of stagnant water can let the city know about it at the City’s Code Enforcement Division’s website.

According to the CDC, about 1 in 5 people infected by West Nile Virus will get a fever or other symptoms, while 1 in 150 will get a serious, sometimes fatal illness. There is no vaccine for the virus.

There have been 958 mosquito pools that have tested positive for WNV this year in Texas, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.

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