The recent wet weather we’ve experienced is the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Not only is this blood sucking insect the cause of much irritation on a hot summer’s night, it can also be the carrier and spreader of disease.
This includes the Ross River Virus, a painful and debilitating condition which can occur in clusters during warmer months in parts of regional Victoria.
More commonly though, mosquitoes can ruin your outdoor activities during summer with their irritating bites on exposed skin.
Mosquito bites can be easily avoided by taking simple protective measures, including:
- Wearing loose fitting and full length clothing.
- Using insect sprays and repellents. The most effective options contain either picaridin or DEET, which are the most common active ingredients in insect repellents.
- Ensuring stagnant water does not accumulate around your home, for example in play equipment, pot plant bowls, pet bowls or blocked guttering.
- Using fly-screens on doors and windows to prevent mosquitoes entering your home.
Over the summer season, Environmental Health Officers from our Health Protection Unit will be setting up mosquito traps in selected local parks throughout Yarra. The trapped mosquitoes are then collected and sent to laboratory to determine the types and number of mosquitoes in these areas. These traps are fully signed and cordoned off for your safety.
We hope this program will provide useful information to assist with the control of mosquitoes.
The good news is, that based on the trapping done at the end of last summer the local mosquito population is not likely to pose a disease risk.
More useful information can be found on how to beat the bite at the Better Health website.
The government also has translated information in various languages about protecting yourself from mosquito bites, which can be found here.