Fayette County

Mosquitoes near busy Lexington shopping center test positive for West Nile Virus

A pool of mosquitoes in Lexington tested positive for West Nile Virus.
A pool of mosquitoes in Lexington tested positive for West Nile Virus. Dreamstime/TNS file

A pool of mosquitoes collected late last month in the 40509 Lexington zip code that includes busy Hamburg stores tested positive for West Nile Virus, the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department announced Wednesday.

The health department said it will spray for mosquitoes in the 40509 zip code from 3 a.m. to 6 a.m. Thursday. The area includes residential areas of Chilesburg along North Cleveland Road as well as neighborhoods along Polo Club Boulevard, Liberty Road and Todds Road. Palumbo Boulevard, which has several businesses, also is located in the zip code.

The results were the first positive tests of West Nile virus this year in Lexington. No human cases have been reported so far this season, according to the health department.

Spraying also took place in August 2017 when a Lexington resident got a West Nile infection.

West Nile virus can be spread to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. Around 20 percent of people infected will experience symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting and sometimes swollen lymph glands or skin rash, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

Lexington residents can take steps at home to fight mosquitoes, including fixing or installing window and door screens; covering or eliminating empty containers with standing water; and limiting the number of breeding places by getting rid of tires, buckets, barrels and cans.

The health department also encourages residents to be aware of peak mosquito activity times around dusk and dawn. Using insect repellent during peak activity times and wearing long sleeves, long pants and socks outdoors, when weather permits, is also suggested.

The Pocket neighborhood in Sacramento was identified by the local vector control district as an area of concern for West Nile virus in June 2018. The district is considering aerial spraying in the area.