DALLAS — As the mosquito population continues to grow in North Texas, the city of Dallas is preparing for pest control spraying this weekend.
City employees discovered several samples that tested positive for the West Nile virus. The areas being treated Friday and Saturday night are listed in a city message to residents.
It includes Maria Munoz’s West Dallas neighborhood.
“Yeah, we need to take care of the mosquitoes… it’s scary,” said Munoz.
It’s the first round of West Nile tests that have come back positive this year, and those with the city’s Consumer Health Division said there could be more.
“We set out about 70 traps every week and they’re sent off to the lab for testing for West Nile virus,” said Matthew Cloninger, a supervisor with the Consumer Health Division.
He urges residents to take precautions against mosquito bites by reducing outdoor activity during the evening and nighttime hours, using a mosquito repellent and eliminating standing water.
The West Nile virus hits close to home for Steve Moore. He is the founder of “Mosquito Steve,” a company that specializes in getting rid of the biting insects. He also contracted the virus they carry in 2010.
“For two months, it was like having the flu all the time. I was achy and I was in so much pain, nausea and all that, and then after two months it went away,” said Moore.
Moore was lucky. In some cases, the disease can be fatal. The recent heavy rainfall supports mosquitos breeding, and ultimately could lead to a dangerous summer.
“It’s really about the water if you have a whole bunch of water and a lot of rain you’re gonna have a big population of mosquitoes we’ve had a we had a lot of rain this spring so we might just have a big population this year,” said Moore.
Meanwhile, Munoz said she’s not taking any chances when it comes to her family’s safety. She plans to be very vigilant about avoiding the bugs.
"I see a lot of mosquitoes like big mosquitoes outside of the house and it’s not good," she said.
Within 24 hours of sending out the first press release regarding treating areas that tested positive for mosquitos having West Nile virus, the city of Dallas sent out a second press release about more areas that tested positive for the virus.