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Thursday , November 15 2018
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Tag Archives: mosquito

El Paso DPH Observes National Mosquito Control Awareness Week

In observance of National Mosquito Control Awareness Week, the Public Health and Environmental Services Departments are teaming up with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to prevent mosquito bites, and mosquito-borne diseases such as West Nile Virus, Chikungunya, Dengue, and Zika.

Mayor Dee Margo and City Council will proclaim Wednesday, June 27, 2018 “Zika Action Day” at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.

In addition, health educators from the DPH will be visiting with parents and children in the Socorro area to teach the importance of preventing these diseases. Zika virus spreads through the bite of an infected mosquito, sexual intercourse, blood transfusion, and from a mother to her fetus. As a part of these presentations, the DPH will be providing women of childbearing age a kit, which includes repellent, condoms, and educational materials.

Residents can take part by following the Public Health Department on Facebook and Twitter to help spread the word. Sharing our daily posts could help save a life.

Mosquito Control Awareness Week began June 24 and runs through June 30, 2018. For more information on the Public Health Department, call 2-1-1 or visit their English-language webpage or the Spanish-language page.

The El Paso Department of Public Health is asking residents to help ‘fight the bite’ by reducing the spread of mosquito borne diseases using these prevention methods:

  • DEET – Use insect repellents that contain DEET when outdoors
  • DRESS – Wear long sleeves, long pants, and socks when outdoors
  • DUSK and DAWN – Although mosquitoes associated with Zika can be active throughout the day, residents should take extra care during peak mosquito biting hours (from dusk to dawn) or consider avoiding outdoor activities during these times.
  • DRAIN – Drain standing water from flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, and birdbaths.

Disease Prevention Encouraged During Mosquito Control Awareness Week

With the summer season upon us, and the monsoon season on its way, mosquitoes are more prevalent. The Department of Public Health is joining other agencies and organizations across the country reminding residents that mosquitoes can spread various diseases.

“We have a disease like West Nile Virus that is now commonplace in our region and we have seen a great amount of people get sick and even die from this disease over the years,” said Robert Resendes, Public Health Director. “We don’t need to wait for a novel virus like Zika to know that mosquitoes might be small creatures, but the diseases they carry can be major.”

During the week of June 25 through July 1 the Department will be using social media to drive home the importance of preventing mosquito breeding and using personal protection to prevent getting bitten.

Residents can like or follow EP Public Health on Facebook or Twitter for regular reminders on mosquito prevention.

While the Zika Virus continues to generate interest across the country and around the world, no Zika-carrying mosquitoes have been found in our area. Since there are other diseases transmitted by mosquitoes, local officials want to make sure mosquito prevention methods are being practiced to reduce the prevalence of any mosquito-borne disease.

Last season a total of three imported cases of Zika were reported in El Paso, and there were six confirmed cases of West Nile Virus recorded. Other diseases like Chikungunya and Dengue are also emerging with their spread from South and Central America into the United States.

Residents are asked to practice “The 3 D’s”:

  • Drain: Empty out water containers at least once per week
  • Dress: Wear long sleeves, long pants, and light-colored, loose-fitting clothing
  • Defend: Properly apply an approved repellent such as DEET, picaridin, IR3535 or oil of lemon-eucalyptus

In addition, the Environmental Services Vector Control Program continues its efforts to decrease the mosquito population by trapping mosquitos and fogging areas where a large presence is found. Vector Control treats all areas around the city where breeding can occur such as canals and reservoirs.

For more information on the programs and services provided, please dial 2-1-1 or visit www.EPHealth.com or www.EPSalud.com

NMSU Extension Expert Provides Tips for Mosquito-proofing Your Yard

Unfortunately, the dry desert doesn’t protect from mosquitoes. These bloodsuckers emerge each year and, according to Jeff Anderson, the Agronomy and Horticulture Agent for New Mexico State University’s Dona Ana County Cooperative Extension Service, the state’s mosquitoes are especially active in July and August, once the monsoon season rains kick in.

Anderson warns the mosquitoes that carry the dangerous Zika virus, known as Aedes aegypti mosquitos, are found in Dona Ana County. And, unlike other mosquitoes, these are especially aggressive during the day, and only land on humans for a short time, making them harder to spot and swat.

Anderson offers the following tips for mosquito-proofing your yard:

1) Find dry land. Get rid of any standing water around your home. Old tires, plastic buckets and toys left outside can collect rainwater where mosquitoes lay eggs. Taking care of your property won’t just help you; it will help the whole neighborhood.

2) Be water smart. Too much water on your lawn can make it a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Don’t overwater. It’s also a good idea to water in the morning, instead of in the evening, so the soil has an opportunity to dry during the day.

3) Spray the bugs away. Use mosquito repellent that contains DEET when you’re outdoors. For those allergic to DEET, stores often have natural repellents as well.

4) Use power plants. Some forms of eucalyptus, as well as lavender, can repel mosquitoes simply by being planted in an area. Other plants, such as basil and catnip, produce oils in their leaves, which can be crushed and used in sprays to repel mosquitoes.

5) Get an oil change. Essential oils, including citrus, lemon eucalyptus, cedar, garlic and citronella, are useful in keeping mosquitoes at bay and can be purchased locally or online.

6) Go all-natural. A number of granular mosquito prevention products for lawns and floating products for use in water features contain natural bacteria called Bacillus thuringiensis, which is toxic to mosquitoes, but won’t hurt pets, humans or other animals.

7) Dress for success. Mosquitoes are attracted to heat, and dark-colored clothing tends to retain heat. During mosquito season, make sure to wear clothes that are light-colored, loose-fitting and long-sleeved.

8) Set some traps. Studies have found that commercial carbon dioxide mosquito traps can kill thousands of mosquitoes a night. Bug zappers, on the other hand, aren’t as effective. Zappers kill bugs indiscriminately, and only about one percent of the zapped bugs turn out to be mosquitoes. Stick with the CO2 traps.

9) Bring in the big guns. A number of chemical products specifically designed for mosquito control are available at local stores. Make sure to check for these products early, and stock up. They’ll sometimes run out before the end of mosquito season.

Author:  Justin Bannister – NMSU