West Nile Virus & Mosquito Control
The City of Mesquite has started its Integrated Mosquito Management Plan. The City of Mesquite Health Division will continue our mosquito control program of larvicide, surveillance, adulticide and public education. Prevention is the best defense against the West Nile virus. Mesquite residents are reminded to enjoy the outdoors, and remember the four D’s:
- Dusk and dawn are the times of day you should try to stay indoors. This is when infected mosquitoes are most active.
- Dress in long sleeves and pants when you’re outside. For extra protection, you may want to spray thin clothing with repellent.
- DEET is an ingredient to look for in your insect repellent. Follow label instructions, and always wear repellent when outdoors.
- Drain standing water in your yard and neighborhood where mosquitoes can breed. This includes old tires, flowerpots, clogged rain gutters, etc. Mosquitoes may develop in any water stagnant for more than three or four days.
What is West Nile virus?
West Nile virus is most commonly transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. There are no medications to treat or vaccines to prevent West Nile virus infection. Fortunately, most people infected with the virus will have no symptoms. About 1 in 5 people who are infected will develop a fever and other symptoms. Less than 1% of infected people develop a serious and sometimes fatal neurological illness.
Each week, 22 mosquito traps are set throughout the city to evaluate mosquito activity and to test for the presence of viruses. When a trap tests positive for a mosquito infected with the West Nile Virus, an adulticide containing permethrin is applied in the area using a vector control truck equipped with an ultra low volume (ULV) fogger. Sprayings are performed between 10 p.m. and 5:30 a.m. A trap containing more than 200 mosquitoes will trigger increased larvicide application from vector control staff and evaluation by staff for night time spraying. An interactive Mosquito Spray map showing the date and areas that have been sprayed is available at .
What is permethrin?
Permethrin is an insecticide in the pyrethroid family. Pyrethroids are synthetic chemicals that act like natural extracts from the chrysanthemum flower. There are currently 1,400 registered products containing permethrin. These products may be used on food and feed crops, on lawns, on livestock and pets, in structures and buildings, and on clothing. Permethrin may also be used in places where food is handled, such as restaurants. Permethrin was first registered with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) in 1979 and has been extensively tested for safety.