Greater Shepparton City Council advises residents that the La Nina in 2020 may lead to an increase in mosquitos and mosquito-borne diseases this season.
La Nina is a weather pattern that brings with it cooler weather and more rain, resulting in an expected wetter than usual spring and summer.
Mosquitoes lay their eggs on or around stagnant or still water such as ponds, backyard plant containers, clogged gutters, floodplains or wetlands. The more rain and water, the more opportunities for mosquitoes to multiply.
While many think of mosquitos as simply annoying, they do carry and transmit viruses or bacteria into our blood that can result in illness.
Dengue and malaria are two of the more significant viruses carried by mosquitos, both of which Australia has been lucky enough to avoid. However, mosquitoes still cause debilitating diseases in Australia every year.
These include transmission of Ross River virus, Barmah Forest virus and the potentially fatal Murray Valley encephalitis virus.
Council advises residents there are simple steps they can take to reduce the impacts of mosquitoes.
Wearing insect repellent when outdoors will help reduce your chance of mosquito bites. But it’s also important to tip out, cover up, or throw away any water-holding containers in our backyard, at least once a week.
While it is impossible to guarantee an increase in disease this year, Greater Shepparton residents will have to be on their toes when out and about this spring and summer.