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Elizabeth Pagano is the editor of the Austin Monitor.
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West Nile found in Travis County
Friday, July 17, 2020 by Elizabeth Pagano
As if 2020 had not handed us enough to deal with, a pool of mosquitoes in the ZIP code 78756 has tested positive for West Nile virus. (Last year, 119 positive pools were found in Texas, though none in Travis County.) According to Austin Public Health, symptoms of West Nile infection “may include fever, headache and body aches, a skin rash on the trunk of the body, and swollen lymph nodes. Those over the age of 50 are at higher risk for severe illness, which may include stiffness, disorientation, coma, tremors, vision loss, and paralysis.” The health authority stresses that the best way to prevent the virus is to reduce the number of mosquitoes in the area by draining sources of water where they can breed and by avoiding bites. The city has a site dedicated to West Nile that has more information about the virus as well as an Arbovirus Surveillance Map that details where infected mosquitoes have been found.