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Wednesday, September 13, 2006

So long, suckers

NEWTON

There's good news on the mosquito front in Newton, but health officials are warning that we're still not out of the woods yet.

Thanks to the cooler weather and the city's catch basin treatment program, the overall number of mosquitoes has dropped and the latest batch of mosquitoes sent to the state for analysis came back negative for traces of the West Nile Virus. Last month, two batches of mosquitoes and two dead birds -- a blue jay found in West Newton and a crow from Newton Centre -- tested positive for West Nile.

While the good news is that there are fewer mosquitoes, the bad news is that the ones that have survived are tougher, more mature little suckers who are more likely to be infected. Health Commissioner David Napartsek says you should wear repellent until at least the first frost if you are going to be outside between dusk and dawn.

-- Ralph Ranalli

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