PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — When it rains and water ponds, mosquitos breed faster than ever.

So Tuesday, the Allegheny County Health Department set out traps to capture and determine how dangerous these mosquitoes are.

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“We set traps yesterday and we brought them back, and what we found were a bunch of Culex mosquitoes in those traps,” Leah Lamonte of the Health Department told KDKA’s Jon Delano on Wednesday. “So what we’re doing here in Allegheny County are looking for those mosquitoes that transmit West Nile Virus.”

These captured bugs will be analyzed for West Nile, such a serious problem that the Health Department is posting signs around town and at bus stops.

Lamonte says the worst case involves “swelling around the brain, causing paralysis, trouble walking.”

To limit that chance, get rid of standing water on your property where mosquitoes breed.

Use something called mosquito dunk in bird baths and other necessary water pools.

And don’t forget mosquito repellant.

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Local stores carry a wide variety of products to help.

County health officials say the key to an effective mosquito repellant is the quantity of Deet contained in it.

Some products have only 7 percent, while another product has 25 percent, but many people prefer a mosquito repellant that has no Deet at all.

“A lot of people coming in for personal use like to be able to buy things without Deet in it,” says Chuck Satterfield, of Rolliers Hardware in Mt. Lebanon.

Rolliers handles both Deet and non-Deet products, like Grandma’s Don’t Bug Me Soap.

“This item is a product you just lather up and put it on exposed skin, let it dry, and you’re protected for the day,” says Satterfield. “And there’s no Deet involved. It’s all natural product.”

But stopping the breeding comes first.

“Vigilance is really the key,” notes Lamonte. “Take a look around your neighborhood and your own back yard.”

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