Delta County tops state in number of West Nile cases

Mosquito (Culex pipiens) profile

Mosquitoes from two local traps in Mesa County tested positive for West Nile virus last week as health officials urge residents keep an eye out for the buzzing bug over the next several weeks.

According to Mesa County Health, there were two confirmed human cases of the West Nile virus in Mesa County last year.

Mesa County epidemiologist Chelsea Spacy said the Aug. 5 tests show that there is West Nile circulating in the region at this time as West Nile cases are most frequent in Mesa County around August and September.

This week's test was the first positive West Nile case in Mesa County in 2019.

Last year there weren't any positive West Nile tests from the local traps, Spacy said, as health officials remain watchful and concerned about the virus throughout the summer.

She advised since this is the time of year activity typically peaks, it is as critical as ever for residents to take precautions.

She recommended folks stay indoors around dusk and dawn and to wear long sleeves and pants when outside.

If you're outside, she recommended you use EPA-approved insect repellent effective against mosquitoes. Look for one that contains DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, 2-undecanone, or oil of lemon eucalyptus.

Also, drain any standing water.

Last year the first reported case of West Nile occurred in August. The second occurred in September.

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