Two more Hutto mosquito samples test positive for West Nile Virus

Mosquito tests in Hutto again test positive for West Nile Virus.

Mosquito tests in Hutto again test positive for West Nile Virus.

Another round of tests of mosquito samples in Hutto came back positive for West Nile Virus. Collections in the Hutto Parke subdivision and in Creekside Park yielded positive results in the Culex quinquefasciatus, or southern house mosquito. The mosquito has a flight range of about one mile.

Hutto participates in the Williamson County and Cities Health District’s mosquito management program. The samples, according to a release from the city, were taken on Nov. 1 and lab results from the Texas Department of State Health Services in Austin were reported to the city Nov. 7.

The city is following the health district’s best practices for integrated mosquito management, which at this time calls for truck-mounted spraying along with enhanced monitoring and testing. Enhanced mosquito control efforts will also continue with treatment of standing water with larvicide.

Spraying is set for three consecutive nights beginning 9 p.m. Nov. 11 in the impacted areas including the Hutto Parke subdivision and Creekside Estates subdivision.

Although the mosquito control product poses no significant health risk, homeowners are asked to stay inside with their pets during spraying.

What you can do

Mosquitoes breed in standing or stagnant water. Eliminate 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 3Ds 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.

The city’s parks and recreation department uses bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) larvicide tablets on public property to treat any standing water that cannot be drained. Bt is a naturally-occurring bacteria that is harmless to people and most pets but it interrupts the reproduction cycle of mosquitoes. Bt is available for home use at most hardware retailers.

In addition, the city’s code enforcement division is focusing on mosquito abatement throughout the community. Report locations of stagnant water on public or private property to the code enforcement division via www.huttotx.gov/RequestTracker, the HuttoNow app available for mobile devices or email [email protected].

For more information on mosquito safety, visit http://www.wcchd.org/services/disease_mgmt/fight_the_bite_-_williamson_county/index.php.
By Joe Warner
Joe Warner is executive editor of Community Impact Newspaper. He previously served as managing editor for Central Texas and senior editor of the flagship Round Rock, Pflugerville and Hutto newspaper. He came to Central Texas from Metro Detroit, where he was editor and general manager of several daily and weekly publications. He is the former president of the Michigan Press Association and was on the MPA board of directors for nine years.