News Release: ROUTINE Mosquito Surveillance Reveals Aedes albopictus Mosquito in the Area
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Thursday, July 9th, 2020 | 3:00 p.m. | Windsor-Essex County
For the first time this season, the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU) has identified Aedes albopictus invasive mosquitoes during routine surveillance in the City of Windsor. Aedes albopictus has been identified across the United States, including Michigan, Ohio, New York and has been routinely captured locally in the Windsor and Essex County region since 2016.
Aedes albopictus mosquitoes are aggressive daytime biters, with peaks in activity in the early morning and late afternoon. They typically lay eggs in and near standing water in items such as buckets, bowls, animal dishes, flowerpots, clogged gutters and old tires.
Although the species can spread the Zika virus, it remains a very low risk in our community. The most significant risk to contracting the Zika virus continues to be centred on those who have travelled to Zika-risk areas or who are or have been in sexual contact with these travellers.
“There is currently no change in risk for Zika virus in our community. The Aedes albopictus mosquito that was identified has tested negative for Zika and West Nile virus. The discovery of the Aedes albopictus again this year is an important reminder to everyone that we should continue to protect ourselves and our families from mosquito bites,” said Dr. Ahmed, Medical Officer of Health, Windsor-Essex County Health Unit. Here are some simple tips to help protect from mosquito bites:
- Remove any standing water in places such as birdbaths, buckets, old tires, pet water dishes and gutters around your property. Mosquitoes can breed in containers as small as a bottle cap!
- Wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and a hat when outdoors. Light-coloured clothing is best as mosquitoes tend to be attracted to dark colours.
- Use insect repellents that contain DEET, Icaridin, or other approved ingredients on clothing as well as exposed skin. Always read and follow label directions.
- Make sure that door and window screens fit securely and are free of holes
Call 311 or your local by-law enforcement to report standing water observed in your community.
The WECHU will continue to conduct mosquito surveillance in Windsor and Essex County. For more information on Aedes albopictus, visit the Health Unit’s web page.