A sort of mosquito identified to unfold sicknesses corresponding to Zika virus, yellow fever, dengue, and chikungunya have been present in a Nebraska county, well being officers introduced this week.
The Nebraska Division of Well being and Human Companies (DHHS) and the 4 Corners Well being Division stated in a press release Tuesday that Aedes aegypti mosquitoes have been recognized in York County. The invention marks the primary time these mosquitoes — that are usually present in tropical climates — have been positioned within the state.
The mosquitoes have been discovered throughout routine mosquito surveillance, which is performed to evaluate what number of West Nile carrying mosquitoes are within the state. However generally, “the mosquito traps yield sudden findings with potential public well being influence,” officials said in the news release.
Although Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are identified to unfold Zika virus and different illnesses, “the transmission of those pathogens would require an individual presently contaminated with such a illness to be bitten by an Aedes aegypti mosquito after which that mosquito would wish to chew one other uninfected individual,” Dr. Tom Safranek, a state epidemiologist for DHHS, stated in a press release.
This implies the danger of an infection is low and “additionally depending on the presence or arrival of an contaminated particular person within the space,” he stated.
“This discovery underscores the significance of our mosquito trapping system,” Safranek added. “Monitoring and monitoring the kinds of mosquitoes that exist in Nebraska communities is important, which in flip helps us determine potential public well being implications and implement prevention measures to cut back danger.”
Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, which generally chew people in the course of the day, can solely fly about 500 ft in distance, well being officers stated. Although it’s not presently clear how they arrived within the state, Safranek instructed Live Well Nebraska the bugs might have arrived as eggs, presumably in used tires.
One of the simplest ways to forestall mosquito-borne illnesses is by draining standing water — like in birdbaths, buckets or on pool covers — as stagnant water can function a breeding floor for these bugs. Different preventive measures embrace masking pores and skin with long-sleeved pants and shirts whereas exterior and correctly utilizing insect repellent containing DEET.