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Friday, April 16, 2021

Denton County reports significant increase in mosquito population

Denton County Public Health (DCPH) is reporting a significant increase in mosquito populations throughout Denton County’s mosquito traps. DCPH is encouraging residents to take precaution while outside.

“In countywide sampling, we are seeing up to ten times the number of mosquitoes collected this week compared to previous weeks,” said Dr. Matt Richardson, Director of Public Health. “Advising the public of this increase in the mosquito population is a precautionary and proactive measure, and we hope it further encourages residents to utilize protection while outside.”

DCPH has previously reported five traps with mosquitoes carrying West Nile Virus (WNV) this year, as well as one positive human case of West Nile Neuroinvasive Disease. DCPH conducts ground spraying for mosquitoes when a mosquito tests positive for WNV or Zika and are within unincorporated areas of Denton County. Within the 45 cities and towns inside Denton County, each maintains unique policies on actions in response to mosquito monitoring, collecting, and ground spraying.

“We want to remind residents to use mosquito repellent when outside this evening, throughout the weekend, and in the coming weeks,” said Juan Rodriguez, DCPH Assistant Director and Chief Epidemiologist. “With two recent positive WNV mosquito traps and a human case of West Nile Neuroinvasive Disease, the potential is certainly there for these mosquitoes to carry disease.”

DCPH advises residents to take the following steps to minimize risk of mosquito exposure:

• Drain standing water in your yard and neighborhood to minimize mosquito breeding sites such as bird baths, flowerpots, and clogged rain gutters. Consider the use of BTI briquettes, often called mosquito dunks, in standing water that cannot be eliminated.

• Dress in long sleeves and pants when you are outside and spray thin clothing with repellent.

• Defend yourself by using EPA approved repellent. Check for ingredients like DEET, Picaridin, or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus.

Please visit the DCPH West Nile Virus website at www.dentoncounty.com/WNV for additional information

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