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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Officials in Delaware are beginning an annual effort to spray insecticide to combat mosquitoes.

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control said in a statement that weather-permitting, the spraying will begin Thursday downstate and possibly Friday upstate. Officials said in most years about 10,000 acres are sprayed. The spraying is done by helicopter and other aircraft.

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - Millions of mosquitoes have emerged in South Hampton Roads cities following a period of heavy rain.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that officials in the area have been inundated with requests to get rid of the bugs. Cities such as Chesapeake, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach have received more reports than usual and have been spraying for mosquitoes across the area.

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Delaware officials are asking residents to report any sick birds in their efforts to track the West Nile virus.

The Division of Fish and Wildlife said that finding such birds that may have died of the virus will help find areas where the mosquito-borne virus has been.

WBOC reports that species to watch range from crows, blue jays and cardinals to robins, hawks and owls among others.

In addition, authorities are considering imposing penalties on residents who leave standing water where mosquitos breed.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Public health officials say 13 cases of West Nile virus in humans have been confirmed in Maryland this year.

The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene says that number is more than twice the number of West Nile virus cases reported in all of 2014.

The mosquito-borne virus also has been detected in mosquitoes and horses in the state this year.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia officials are reporting the state's first 2015 case of West Nile virus in a horse.

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services says the 5-year-old Choctaw mare from Orange County had not been vaccinated for the mosquito-borne disease.

Mosquitoes can pick up the virus from infected birds and transfer it to humans, horses and other mammals. No drugs exist for treatment, and the mortality rate in horses is about 30 percent.

Continuous mosquito control can minimize risk of exposure.

LEWES, Del. (AP) - State environmental officials say that the Gordons Pond Trail in Sussex County will be closed briefly because of mosquito control efforts.
Weather permitting, the state's Mosquito Control Section plans to spray insecticide for mosquito larvae Tuesday morning in Cape Henlopen State Park, Delaware Seashore State Park and Fenwick Island State Park.
Officials say the helicopter spraying will require the closure of the Gordons Pond Trail adjacent to the state parks from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m.

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - Virginia Beach officials says mosquitoes in some parts of the city have tesed positive for West Nile virus.

Media outlets report the testing occurred over the past three weeks.

West Nile is spread by mosquitoes and can lead to severe headaches and dizziness.

Officials say there will be increased spraying for mosquitoes in the affected areas, which include those near Red Wing Park, the Thalia and Kings Grant neighborhoods and Old Dam Neck Road in Ocean Lakes. Other crews are treating standing water in the same areas.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Department of Agriculture is going after mosquitoes.

The department says it will be spraying on Wednesday in wetlands and salt marshes to kill mosquitoes before they develop into adults and fly into populated areas.

The department plans to apply a new larvicide called Natular 2E. That will be done by flying a twin-engine-Beechcraft plan over 200 acres of the Fishing Bay and Elliot Island area of Dorchester County on the Eastern Shore.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware is starting its annual spring woodland-pool spraying this week.

The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control says its mosquito control section will treat wooded wetlands near select populated areas in New Castle, Kent and Sussex counties.

Officials say about 4,000 to 7,000 forested acres that produce large numbers of early season mosquitoes will be strategically sprayed by helicopter or fixed-wing aircraft.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Agriculture officials say a horse in Sussex County has been euthanized after testing positive for eastern equine encephalitis.

The Department of Agriculture said Thursday that the yearling filly had signs of severe neurologic disease and was put down despite receiving veterinary care.

Officials said the last case of EEE, a mosquito-borne disease, in Delaware was reported in 2005.

State Veterinarian Dr. Heather Hirst urged owners to get their horses vaccinated against EEE and West Nile Virus, another mosquito-borne disease.