Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS) laboratory confirmed mosquito samples have tested positive for West Nile virus. These are the first positive samples to be confirmed this year. The mosquito traps were collected from the 75108 zip code of Balch Springs and the 75149 and 75150 zip codes of Mesquite.

Culex quinquefasciatus/CDC
Culex quinquefasciatus/CDC

“Mosquito season is underway and West Nile virus remains the number one arbovirus threat in Dallas County,” said Zachary Thompson, DCHHS director. “DCHHS encourages residents to be a part of the solution by eliminating insect breeding areas and larvae before mosquitoes reach the airborne stage.”

In conjunction with Dallas County municipalities, mosquito abatement teams are responding by treating areas and ground spraying is currently scheduled.

Mosquito spraying schedule, weather permitting:

Balch Springs:

  • Thursday, April 13, 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m.
  • Friday, April 14, 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m.

Residents should remain inside during the time sprayers are in the area. Spraying will not be conducted in the event of wind speeds in excess of 10 mph or inclement weather.

Residents should use the 4Ds to reduce exposure to mosquitoes:

• DEET All Day, Every Day: Whenever you’re outside, use insect repellents that contain DEET or other EPA approved repellents and follow instructions.

• Dress: Wear long, loose, and light-colored clothing outside.

• Drain: Drain or treat all standing water in and around your home or workplace.

• Dusk & Dawn: Limit outdoor activities during dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.

Dallas County, Texas was referred to as the “epicenter” of the 2012 WNV outbreak. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),  there were 5,387 cases of West Nile virus disease in people, including 243 deaths in the US that year.

Eighty percent of the cases have been reported from 13 states (Texas, California, Louisiana, Illinois, Mississippi, South Dakota, Michigan, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Colorado, Arizona, Ohio, and New York) and a third of all cases have been reported from Texas.