Local West Nile Concerns Addressed

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EAGLE POINT, Ore. – The CDC says the West Nile Virus is spreading farther and faster this season than ever before. More than 1,100 cases have been reported in 47 states and at least 41 people have died.

No state has been hit harder by West Nile than Texas, which is why many communities are spraying pesticides from the air. Pilots are now spraying for mosquitoes over two areas of Northern California, despite objections from environmental groups.

The West Nile Virus has made its way to Southern Oregon as well. When a pool tested positive in Talent last week, officials started fogging the area for the West Nile Virus. Since then, the numbers have dropped. Vector Control officials believe the traps and fogging are working.

Although this test creates a buzz in the air, getting the virus isn’t as likely as you’d think. Jackson County Vector Control officials say it’s been five years since they last found an infected pool. The last time a horse or human in the state of Oregon tested positive for the virus was in 2009. If you find mosquitoes near your home, you can give Vector Control a call, but officials say all mosquitoes aren’t able to carry the virus.

The disease is much more severe when found in horses. A local equine doctor strongly recommends getting your horse vaccinated. It costs about $35.00 to get your horse vaccinated. Doctors say it’s the most effective way to protect your horse from getting the West Nile Virus.

Vector Control officials say it’s not just out in the country near sitting water where the mosquitoes breed. Officials say drains in the city streets storing water are perfect mosquito habitats, too.