Bill Clark Pest Control, Inc. wants to educate residents of Southeast Texas about the Zika Virus.
This rare tropical disease has been making national headlines and growing concern is sweeping the nation. “We are urging the public to pay close attention to this matter and to learn more about how to protect themselves from coming into contact with mosquitoes and to help reduce mosquito populations by eliminating sources of stagnant water around the yard and in our community” said Dr. Bart Foster, entomologist at Bill Clark Pest Control.
As of now, all human cases being reported in the U.S. were contracted from travel abroad to regions affected by the virus. Zika is a mosquito borne virus that was first identified in 1947. For unknown reason the number of cases of the disease has drastically increased in Latin America in recent months. Of even more concern there is growing evidence the disease may be causing birth defects. The disease normally causes mild flu like symptoms but appears to be tied to an increase of babies born with poorly developed brains when the mother is infected while pregnant. The disease is spreading and it is feared that it could reach the United States as early as this spring. US officials have issued travel warnings for pregnant women to avoid visiting countries where the virus is active.
“The mosquitoes that carry the virus are found in Southeast Texas,” Foster said. He went on to say “These type of mosquitoes are most active during the day.”
Bill Clark Pest Control offers the following precautions to avoid contact with mosquitoes:
- Wear long sleeve shirts and long pants when spending time outdoors while mosquitoes are most active.
- If you must spend time outdoors during peak mosquito times, always use repellent containing DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon-eucalyptus.It is especially important to wear effective insect repellents and protective clothing if traveling outside the U.S.
- Make sure window screens are in good repair. Repair even the smallest tear or hole.
- Eliminate areas of standing water around the home such as flowerpots, birdbaths, baby pools, grill covers and other objects where water collects. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in water where the larvae develop and need only about 1/2 inch of water to breed.
- Treatment of yards can also reduce mosquito populations surrounding a home.
- Continue to educate yourself on this virus and to follow the U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s travel warnings to places where the virus is found. Click here for a full list.