Hot weather blamed for early West Nile virus season in N. Utah


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BEAR RIVER CITY, Box Elder County — Mosquito Abatement crews in Box Elder County say weeks of hot weather have allowed the mosquitoes that carry West Nile Virus to become more productive, creating a problem earlier than is typically expected.

A mosquito found inside a trap last week tested positive for the West Nile Virus. It's something Box Elder County Mosquito Abatement Director Randel Sessions has seen before, just not this soon.

"It's two to three or four weeks earlier than we normally get the virus," Sessions said Monday. "Early means it's going to have that much more time to spread around."

Bear River City isn't the first area in Utah to see the virus. Positive readings for the virus have also been recorded in Salt Lake County and in Uintah County. Sessions said his crews will take a proactive approach starting this week.

"We'll be doing a lot more larval control throughout this area," he explained. "(We will) immediately start doing some more adult mosquito control in this area."

Sessions added that aerial spraying will also start within the next few days, all focused on the Bear River City area. Meanwhile, Sessions said residents need to do their part.

"Wear long sleeve shirts and long pants, and put on mosquito repellent," Sessions said. "... dusk and dawn is when those mosquitoes are active. They're not out in the daytime."

For more information on West Nile virus, symptoms and prevention, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s official website, www.cdc.gov.

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