Tuesday, July 5th, 2016
REMOVE STANDING WATER TO THWART THE ASIAN TIGER MOSQUITO
Morris County mosquito control experts are enlisting county residents in the battle against the most probable New Jersey carrier of the Zika virus, the Asian Tiger Mosquito, which thrives in backyard settings and can be thwarted by home and apartment and condo owners in all 39 Morris County towns.
Control of this mosquito is challenging for county mosquito crews alone because this species thrives in residential backyards which are not typically part of the over 10,000 locations already routinely inspected for mosquito production.
The number one tactic to reduce this mosquito population for residents to remove standing water on and around their property. The Asian Tiger will use almost any container that holds water to breed, including flower pots, cans, buckets, discarded tires, wheelbarrows, and clogged gutters, among many possibilities.
“While we intend to respond aggressively to this mosquito where and when we can get to it, it is also vital to get the public’s help,’’ said Morris County Mosquito Control Administrator Kris McMorland. “Residents can take the lead in their neighborhoods by dealing with backyard mosquito habitats.’’
There have been 44 travel-related cases of Zika virus in New Jersey in 2016, with two in Morris County, according to the state Department of Health. But there have not yet been any local transmission cases occurring the state.
The main mosquito that transmits Zika virus – and also dengue fever, chikungunya and yellow fever – is Aedes aegypti, said McMorland. There are no established populations of this mosquito in New Jersey, scientists have determined another species that would be the local vector.
In this region the local vector would be Aedes albopictus, or the Asian Tiger Mosquito.
McMorland stressed that county officials are working closely with federal, state, and county health officials to monitor the virus and obtain the most up-to-date information. He noted they worked during the winter and early spring “mosquito off-season’’ to limit future exposure of residents to mosquito-borne diseases
For more tips on battling all mosquitos this summer by eliminating standing water around your homes to reduce mosquito breeding, visit: http://morriscountynj.gov/mosquito/whatyoucando/
To help education the public, the Morris County Mosquito Control Division also has been setting up a travelling information display with information you need to stop this mosquito from making your home, its home.
That display will be set up for a week each at various municipal locations: July 5, Denville; July 11, East Hanover; July 18, Rockaway Township; July 25, Hanover; Aug. 1, Washington Township; Aug 8. Morristown; Aug. 15, Randolph; and Aug. 22, Butler.