Elburn Signs on with Mosquito Control Firm

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Byline: Denise Perry Donavin Daily Herald Correspondent

Mosquito abatement may seem like an unlikely topic for a snowy April evening, but Elburn's village board members listened attentively to Jack Thennisch of Clark Mosquito Control on Monday.

Following Thennisch's presentation on controlling the pests and the West Nile virus, the board approved a new contract with Clark, now the world's largest mosquito control company.

"Last summer was the largest outbreak of mosquito-borne disease in the history of the United States," said Thennisch. "Illinois was the state hardest hit by West Nile virus in 2002 with 778 human cases and 52 fatalities. Two thousand horses were hit by the virus in Illinois last year."

There is a new DNA test, perfected by the military, called Vec- Test, which traps the female mosquito and isolates the virus for more advanced warning than last year's plethora of dead birds.

Birds are amplifiers of the virus, being infected by mosquitoes and infecting others who feed on it. The migration of birds causes the disease to travel as well, explained Thennisch. …