West Nile rampant this year
• Use DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535.
• Avoid going outdoors at dawn and dusk.
• Ensure screens on doors and windows are not broken or torn.
• Drain all standing water around the outside of your house.
— Colusa County Sun-Herald
The West Nile virus has been hot this year, and with ricefields, wetlands and waterfowl refuges flooding, the end of mosquito season is still out of reach.
"It's quite active this year," said David Whitesell, manager of the Colusa Mosquito Abatement District.
"All our chickens are positive. All the counties are seeing this, the same thing," he said.
While summer is wrapping up, mosquitos are not packing up anytime soon.
"About 15,000 acres are going under water, plus refuges are flooding for waterfowl," Whitesell said.
So far, there has been one reported human case of West Nile virus in Colusa County — it came in early August.
The woman is recovering at home, outside the abatement district boundaries, according to a statement from the Colusa County Health and Human Services Department.
Statewide, 23 counties have 87 cases, including five deadly ones in Glenn, Los Angeles, Sacramento and San Joaquin counties, according to the state Department of Public Health.
Colusa County saw an earlier season than usual, but Colusa Mosquito Abatement started spraying late because of a funding shortage.
"We're so limited for funding, we can't do what we want to do. We will ask people for help," Whitesell said.
In an effort to maintain the control program, Whitesell said, officials will seek public help to pass a measure to increase parcel fees to help meet program costs.
He is hoping to increase the budget by about $200,000 above the current level of $384,000.
Whitesell said chemical costs increase by at least 5 percent every year, and the district has to manage higher fuel prices, too.
Due to funding constraints this year, the abatement program began spraying in July as opposed to June and is spraying only once a week.
The last spray is in the first week of November.