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U.S. Air Force C-130 cargo planes began spraying insecticides over three eastern Texas counties over the weekend and will expand to other areas over the next two weeks, officials from the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) said. About 1.85 million acres have been treated as of Tuesday, according to the department.

Officials hope the spraying can avoid outbreaks of mosquito-borne diseases. Texas reported 441 human cases of West Nile virus and 21 deaths since the start of 2016, according to figures released on Tuesday. It reported 342 cases of Zika virus during the same period, including one likely spread by a mosquito bite this year.

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Image:┬áBy Brant Kelly – _DSC9073.jpg, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=61979717

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Reuters

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