While the Zika virus has been around for quite some time, it has not been an issue for the U.S. until recently with the outbreak of the virus in Florida. Although most people are not negatively affected by the Zika virus, it does cause birth defects, especially microcephaly, which results in severe developmental issues.
Genetically Modified Mosquitoes
In an effort to stem their reproduction cycle and lessen the population, the FDA has approved genetically altered/engineered mosquitoes developed by Oxitec, a British firm whose researchers have been developing modified mosquitoes for several years.
The altered mosquitoes are scheduled to be released in the Florida Keys to test their effectiveness. While they will still be able to produce offspring, the new mosquitoes should die off before having an opportunity to reproduce. This should have a definite impact on the mosquito population.
The trial run is scheduled for sometime in November. Oxitec has stated that the genetically modified mosquitoes pose no harm to the environment, and the experiment is expected to be effective in reducing the mosquito population as well as deterring the Zika virus.
NYC pest control specialists can help with mosquito infestations or any other type of insect or pest infestation creating an unhealthy home or business environment. For help with controlling and eliminating unwanted pesky insects, contact our staff at Stern Environment for information on our NYC pest control services.
Summer is always a busy time for pest control companies and mosquito spraying businesses. This year, the possibility of Zika-carrying mosquitos is increasing demand for NYC pest control services. Zika is a viral disease that can cause symptoms such as fever, joint pain, a rash, and red eyes. The virus typically runs its course in about a week. After a person has been infected by the virus, they build up an immunity and are unlikely to contract it again. Unfortunately, these same mosquitoes may also spread the dengue and chikungunya virus.
Those at most risk from Zika
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most people infected with Zika will not visit a hospital. Few people die, and most will not realize they have been infected. But for expectant mothers, the Zika virus causes a serious birth defect known as microcephaly, which leads to severe brain defects in the unborn child.
Protecting yourself from Zika
At this time in America, Zika is passed from an infected person to another during unprotected sex. Avoiding intimate relations with an infected person is your best defense. The mosquito vector is expected soon in America, so when you’re outside, wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants,and use EPA-approved insect repellents. Currently, there is no vaccine for the Zika virus.
Mosquitoes thrive in humid conditions. To identify potential problem areas and for environmentally-friendly NYC pest control services, contact Stern Evironmental for a consultation.
Long Islanders are not pleased with the recent surge in mosquitoes caused by the recent rains. Officials have suggested that the downpours have increased the mosquito population by 50%. County workers have been working overtime setting up and emptying mosquito traps. They are also using bio-chemical larvicide pellets to kill the larvae in drains.
One Long Island resident stated the worst mosquitoes are the Asian Tiger variety. These mosquitoes have distinctive black and white stripes. The resident claims they don’t back off and you feel them when they bite. Going outside is not as much fun as it used to be.
Stagnant water areas are great places for insect breeding so try and eliminate them. Apparently water left on top of pool covers from the recent rains are major locations for mosquito breeding.
Mosquitoes are most active from June through October so enjoy the critters why you can. Oops, I mean try to endure them until the mosquito season is over. I wonder if there are any mosquito repellent containers left on the shelves in Long Island stores. It’s amazing how such a little creature can cause so much havoc.