Mosquito Pool Tests Positive for WNV
The City of Baytown has received notification from Harris County of the City’s first West Nile Virus (WNV)-positive pool of mosquitoes this year. The mosquitoes were collected from a trap located in the Craigmont area. Harris County sprayed the area on Thursday, August 30; and City and County Health Departments will coordinate to spray the area daily Friday – Tuesday (August 30 – September 4), followed by city-wide spraying next week.
To-date this year, there have been 418 positive pools in Harris County. No human cases of WNV have been reported in Baytown.
Health officials strongly recommend that residents walking or sitting outside at dawn or dusk take the appropriate precautions listed below to protect themselves from being bitten by infected mosquitoes.
• DEET - Apply insect repellent according to the label. Repellents containing DEET, picaradin, IR3535, and oil of lemon eucalyptus are the longest lasting and most effective. Repellents keep the mosquitoes from biting you.
• DAWN AND DUSK - Mosquitoes that carry WNV primarily bite in the early morning and evening so it is important to wear repellent at this time. If possible, long sleeved shirts and pants are a good idea. Place mosquito nets over infant carriers when you are going out.
• MOSQUITO PROOF YOUR HOME - Make sure that your doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep out mosquitoes. Repair or replace screens with tears or holes.
• DRAIN - Mosquitoes lay their eggs on standing water. Eliminate all sources of standing water on your property, including flowerpots, old car tires, rain gutters and pet bowls. Ensure that swimming pools, spas, and ponds are properly maintained. Don’t feed the storm drains either – sweep lawn clippings, leaves, and tree limbs from sidewalks and driveways.
• Boats – Cover your boat or store in a covered place. Drain any standard water and make sure the bilge pump is working. Turn over canoes, kayaks and small boats to store upside down.
Symptoms of West Nile virus:
People infected with WNV can experience a variety of symptoms which may last from several days to several weeks.
Symptoms of “West Nile Fever” can include:
• Headaches (often severe migraines)
• High fever
• Tiredness and body aches
• A skin rash and swollen lymph glands
Symptoms of “West Nile Neuroinvasive Disease” can include:
• Severe Headache
• High Fever
• Stiff neck
• Tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness
• Coma: This form of the disease can lead to long lasting and/or permanent damage to the brain.
To report mosquito problems, call the Baytown Health Department, at 281-420-5384 Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. For additional information about West Nile virus, please visit the Harris County Health Department’s website at http://www.hcphes.org/hcmosquitoctrl/.