NEWS ALERT: West Nile virus found in Weston mosquitoes

A pool of mosquitoes trapped near Devil’s Den Preserve in Weston has tested positive for West Nile virus.

According to Mark Cooper, director of health for the Westport Weston Health District, the state health department reported Monday that the virus had been detected in mosquitoes trapped in Weston. “This is not surprising in that towns all around Weston have had such mosquitoes,” Mr. Cooper said in an email to Weston First Selectman Gayle Weinstein.

Mosquitoes have tested positive for the virus, which can cause flu-like symptoms in people who are bitten by the infected insects, in more than 30 towns in the state this year, including nearby Wilton, Westport, Bethel, Darien, and New Canaan.

“People just need to be aware and take appropriate precautions,” said Ms. Weinstein. “No one from Weston has reported being sick,” she added.

Mr. Cooper said the state is not considering doing any aerial spraying of insecticides since the mosquito “season” is winding down.

Ms. Weinstein said she agrees with the decision not to do any aerial spraying. We are concerned about people putting insecticides on their land which will then go directly into well water,” she said.

However, Mr. Cooper said, “until the first frost, residents should be encouraged to avoid mosquito contact during the peak mosquito times of dawn and dusk, as well as use precautions such as [wearing] long sleeve shirts and pants, and the use of repellent.”

Ms. Weinstein added that residents also should take steps to remove standing water on their property, which can attract mosquitoes.

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