CEDAR PARK, TX – A mosquito trap sample collected at Cedar Park tested positive for the West Nile virus, according to official sources.
The positive sample was taken from a city trap near West New Hope Drive and Avenue of the Stars in the area of the HEB Center in Cedar Park. This is the first time this season that a sample from this location has tested positive for West Nile Virus. According to official information, the last date a positive sample was taken was October 2018.
These tests are part of Williamson County’s and Cities Health District’s Integrated Vector Management program. Officials said the positive test appeared in laboratory results obtained Nov. 6 from the Texas Department of Health’s laboratory in Austin.
In 2020, there were 16 mosquito trap samples found positive for West Nile Virus in other parts of Williamson County, according to official figures – the highest number recorded since the program began in 2012. City officials added that there have been three cases of people The West Nile Virus was reported in Williamson County this year.
Symptoms of infection can include fever, headache and body aches, a rash on the trunk of the body, and swollen lymph nodes. People aged 50 and over and / or with compromised immune systems are at greater risk of severe symptoms, including stiffness, disorientation, coma, tremors, loss of vision, paralysis and, in rare cases, death.
Central Texas has mosquitos year round, but the population is largest and most active from May to November, city officials advised. During this time, the health district monitors the mosquito population and tests for mosquito-borne viruses.
“Cooler temperatures extend moist breeding areas for mosquitoes,” said Jason Fritz, director of the integrated vector management program in Williamson County and the Cities Health District, in a prepared statement. “It is highly recommended that you drain standing water around your home outdoors, especially at dusk and dawn, and use insect repellent to protect yourself and your family from mosquito-borne diseases.”
Health district officials said the most important way to prevent West Nile virus is to reduce the number of mosquitoes that people work and play with. Health officials strongly encourage everyone to remain vigilant to protect themselves from mosquito bites and prevent mosquito growth on their personal property. Mosquitoes breed in standing water and only need a teaspoon. By draining all standing water sources in and around their properties, residents can reduce the number of places where mosquitoes can lay and breed their eggs.
What you can do
Eliminating places where mosquitoes can breed and reducing the likelihood 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 protection: