West Nile spraying planned this week

June 10, 2008 12:20:28 AM PDT
The fog is rolling in on Santa Clara County this week. Not the kind the Bay Area is famous for, the kind that kills mosquitoes that carry the West Nile Virus. This is the earliest in the year officials have ever found the virus there.

West Nile Virus was detected in a recent sample of mosquitoes near Westmont High School in San Jose. Santa Clara County Vector Control manager, Tim Mulligan says only two to three mosquitoes were trapped, but all were infected.

"When the numbers are that low, that means the infection rate is actually very high in the mosquitoes," says Mulligan.

The trucks will begin fogging, this Wednesday night, after 11 p.m. The region includes some 18,000 people in San Jose, Campbell, Los Gatos, and Saratoga.

"I'm for the spray because I have two twin girls and I want to make sure they're okay," says Eddie Hernandez, a Campbell resident.

After a dead infected crow was found in this neighborhood, vector control set these traps which mimic a living mammal by giving off carbon dioxide.

"The air that's driven down by the propeller will keep the mosquitoes in this sock," says Mulligan.

Still, some residents are sensitive about the fogging after respiratory complaints surfaced during the spraying for the Light Brown Apple Moth in Santa Cruz and Monterey counties last fall.

"We have animals and kids. We're wondering if that residue stays and is picked up by your dogs and cats," says Megan Billinger, a Los Gatos Resident.

Vector control says a recent flyover of the area spotted about 100 algae-filled pools and ponds. They're the perfect breeding place for mosquito larvae.

The solution can be fish which belong to the guppy family. They have a voracious appetite for mosquito larvae.

There's no charge for them and vector control delivers for free. It's all part of an aggressive plan to rid Santa Clara County of the virus that can cause encephalitis or swelling of the brain.

Santa Clara County says this is the earliest point in the year that West Nile has ever been detected in the Bay Area.

Tuesday night in Campbell, Santa Clara County Health Officials will answer any questions about spraying and its effects in an informational meeting.

Informational Meeting
Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.
Campbell Community Center, Roosevelt Redwood Room
1 West Campbell Ave. in Campbell

More information can also be obtained by calling the district's West Nile Virus hotline at 1-800-314-2427.

Map of the Santa Clara County spraying area: click here

Symptoms of West Nile Virus: click here


Load Comments