Mosquitoes test positive for West Nile virus in Cedar Park
After several days of rain, Cedar Park and Williamson County and Cities Health District are urging neighbors to watch out for mosquitoes, especially after some tested positive for West Nile virus.
On Wednesday, officials released results that showed a sample of mosquitoes in the area near the intersection of Brushy Creek Road and West Parmer Lane tested positive for the virus.
A sample from Cypress Creek Road and South Lakeline Boulevard, which came up positive in previous months, came back negative this time.
Cedar Park spokesperson Jennie Huerta says people need to be extra careful, since there's so much standing water throughout the city, and that water is a major breeding ground for the mosquitoes. "It's a perfect storm for mosquito proliferation," Huerta said.
There are no human cases of West Nile in Williamson County. This latest positive test is near a popular athletic field complex and hike and bike trail.
"West Nile sounds a bit scary. I haven't been wearing bug spray out here, and I get bit by mosquitoes all the time," said Andrew Pyle.
The mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus are not the same as the ones carrying Zika. Those mosquitoes are not here.
The city is continuing expanded trapping, testing, and monitoring, while also working on draining standing water. "Our code compliance staff is hard at work looking for that, so is our parks staff," Huerta said.
Huerta is also urging neighbors to do the same at their homes. "It's imperative that people go out on their yards, or onto their properties, and drain any standing water that they see," Huerta said.
Neighbors say this latest news makes them double-check their homes. "I'm definitely going to be more on the lookout for standing water around the house," said John Griswell.
City officials say they're not spraying because guidelines for West Nile treatment don't call for that, just draining water and expanding testing. They're also urging you to wear sleeves and long pants, and use bug spray before going outside.