MOSQUITO TRAP TESTS POSITIVE FOR WEST NILE VIRUS IN CEDAR PARK
Oct. 10, 2022 – Two mosquito trap samples collected in the City of Cedar Park have tested positive for West Nile virus. This testing is part of Williamson County and Cities Health District’s (WCCHD) Integrated Vector Management program. The positive tests were indicated in lab results received on Oct. 10 from the Texas Department of State Health Services lab in Austin.
The positive samples were collected from the same trap site near the HEB Center at Cedar Park on Oct. 6. The last date a positive sample was collected from this location was Nov. 2020. Expanded trapping in the area will begin tomorrow and signage will be posted.
These are the first reported West Nile virus positive samples of the 2022 season. There have been no reported human cases of West Nile virus in Williamson County this year. In 2021, there were 12 mosquito trap samples that returned positive samples for West Nile virus in Williamson County. There were no human cases of West Nile virus reported in Williamson County in 2021.
Mosquitoes are present in Central Texas year-round, but the population is largest and most active from May through November. During this period, WCCHD monitors the mosquito population and tests for mosquito-borne viruses.
Symptoms of infection may include fever, headache, and body aches, a skin rash on the trunk of the body, and swollen lymph nodes. Those age 50 and older and/or with compromised immune systems are at a higher risk for severe symptoms, which may include stiffness, disorientation, coma, tremors, vision loss, paralysis, and in rare cases, death.
The most important way to prevent West Nile virus is to reduce the number of mosquitoes where people live, work, and play. Health officials strongly encourage everyone to remain vigilant about protecting themselves from mosquito bites and preventing mosquito breeding on their personal property. Mosquitoes breed in standing water, needing as little as one teaspoon. By draining all sources of standing water in and around your property, you reduce the number of places mosquitoes can lay their eggs and breed.
What you can do:
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 flowerpots, 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-registered insect repellent, and
- Dress in long sleeves and pants when outdoors.