The Washoe County Health District says a mosquito sample from the South Meadows area has tested positive for West Nile Virus. This is the first positive test in Washoe County in 2017.

When WNV identification is confirmed, the Health District increases mosquito surveillance and conducts controlled early-morning insecticide fogging in the area. Beginning early Thursday morning, the Health District will be fogging the vicinity to provide relief to South Meadows neighborhoods from increased mosquito activity in the area.

“Because of the heavy precipitation this winter and the prolonged heatwave over the past couple of weeks, it is not surprising that we are seeing West Nile Virus in the area,” said Washoe County Health District Communications Manager Phil Ulibarri. “The weather has been particularly hot and humid offering prime breeding factors for mosquitoes.”  While fogging represents increased prevention efforts by the Health District, and helicopter abatement efforts are scheduled every month this summer, Ulibarri reminds everyone that there are steps you can take personally to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes that carry disease.

How to avoid mosquito bites:

  • Wear proper clothing and repellent if going outdoors when mosquitoes are most active in the early morning and evening;
  • Use a repellant containing DEET, picaradin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535 according to label instructions. Repellents keep the mosquitoes from biting you. DEET can be used safely on infants and children 2 months of age and older. Applications can be put directly on the skin and also on clothing;
  • Make sure that your doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep mosquitoes out. Repair or replace screens with tears or holes;
  • Clear standing water and any items from around homes that can be potential mosquito breeding-grounds, including small puddles, pools, planters, children’s sandboxes, wagons or toys, underneath and around faucets, as well as plant saucers and pet bowls; and,
  • Vaccinate your horses for WNV. 

Residents may report night-time mosquito activity to the Health District at 785-4599 or 328-2434. 

More information on WNV and the Washoe County Health District’s Vector-Borne Disease Prevention Program can be found at

(Washoe County Health District contributed to this report.)