Adulticiding for mosquitoes begins in Memphis and Shelby County

The Memphis and Shelby County Health Department's Vector Control section has detected very high levels of Culex mosquito breeding activity in a number of areas throughout Memphis and Shelby County. Based upon the positive mosquito pools reported by the Tennessee Department of Health Laboratory in the last several weeks, and the mosquito trap surveillance, Health Department teams will begin adulticiding (spraying) in portions of specific zip codes between 9:00 p.m. and midnight on Tuesday night (July 20, 2004), weather permitting. It is anticipated that spraying will continue for the next 3 to 4 nights, until all affected areas are covered.

The areas to be sprayed were chosen based upon mosquito surveillance and testing. Presence of high number of Culex mosquitoes (trap counts) and the identification of West Nile Virus infected mosquitoes indicates increased risk of human infection. Spraying will be conducted in these areas to reduce that risk.

Spray trucks will be in portions of the following zip codes:

38103, 38104, 38105, 38107, 38108, 38111, 38112, 38114, 38115, 38117, 38118, 38119, 38120, 38122, 38126, 38127, 38128 and 38138.

No positive birds have been detected in Shelby County as of today. No human cases have been reported in Shelby County as of this time.

The Memphis and Shelby County Health Department strongly encourages everyone to take extra precautions against mosquito bites. All residents are strongly encouraged to take measures to protect themselves, including the safe use of a mosquito repellant containing DEET.

Due to the fact that the West Nile Virus has been confirmed through laboratory testing in our mosquito population, it is no longer necessary to report dead birds (blue jays and crows) to the Health Department. Testing will no longer be conducted on dead birds this year. Surveillance will continue through the testing of sentinel chicken flocks.

Residents can contact the West Nile Virus Hotline at (901) 544-7503 for more information about the West Nile Virus. Individuals outside of Shelby County should contact their state or local health department for information regarding bird surveillance.

For more information regarding the West Nile Virus or what you can do around your home or business to reduce mosquito activity, check out, or call Vector Control during normal business hours at (901) 324-5547.