West Nile virus is present in mosquitoes in St. Louis County. A delay in the results from the lab used by the health department caused a lag in reporting the positive results. Drew Hane, manager of operations for St. Louis Vector Control, says West Nile is appearing in mosquitoes sporadically across the county, but there are areas with higher concentrations.
"We are pretty heavy in the North County area; so Jennings, unicorporated Florissant, Dellwood, Bellefontaine Neighbors, Spanish Lake, those areas we are seeing quite a few traps come back with samples that are positive for West Nile virus", Hane says.
Hane urges residents in those areas to be especially vigilant in reducing exposure to mosquitoes. They are encouraged to eliminate standing water from property and use bug sprays that contain deet or picaradin. Vector Control does perform spraying in some areas of St. Louis County. More information on spray routes and the schedule can be found by calling 314-615-4BUG (4284) or by clicking here.
Mosquito populations are exploding compared to last year. Hane tells KTRS News that some of their mosquito traps have already captured as many bugs as they did through the end of August last year. The increase in mosquito population could lead to an increase in the number of human cases of West Nile. The first human cases of West Nile typically present in late July or early August.