Recent rain raises concern for West Nile in Lubbock

Vector Control works to stop mosquitoes in larva form

Vector Control working to prevent West Nile in Lubbock County

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - With the higher chance of rain across the region, brings an increase in mosquitoes. Now experts are investigating the possibility of West Nile in Lubbock County.

To help cut down on the chance of a mosquito bite carrying West Nile, the City of Lubbock has a plan.

“Flood water mosquitoes are starting to develop and start to actually emerge out, and feed," says Steven Boston, the Vector Control Coordinator.

Katherine Wells, Director of Public Health for the City of Lubbock explains, “West Nile is kind of tricky because it’s carried in the bird population so it’s actually the mosquitoes, they feed off of a bird that’s infected with West Nile, and that brings it into the mosquito population and we can’t control the birds, so the birds fly into town, they can be carrying west nile, and they can infect our mosquito population, and they can infect a human."

If West Nile was confirmed in the region, The Lubbock Health Department says it would first notify the community, work with vector control, and then target specific areas.

“You would definitely see flu like symptoms, especially fever, fatigue, just those general not feeling well," says Wells. "Most people who get West Nile actually clear the disease without needing any hospitalization, actually a lot of people can get the disease and not even get sick.”

For now though, the city’s Vector Control is hard at work, trying to stop mosquitoes before they’re up and flying.

“We’re trying to break the cycle of larva development into pupa into adult stage by going out and doing the larvicide projects that we do on a daily basis," says Boston.

To keep yourself safe, it’s as simple as spraying on some repellent.

If you notice an influx of mosquitoes in your neighborhood, call the City of Lubbock’s mosquito spraying hot line. That number is (806) 775-3110.

The city’s health department and vector control say it’s up to residents to do their part and dump any standing water around your home or yard.

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