MERCED, CA– The Merced County Mosquito Abatement District says they have identified an Aedes aegypti, also known as the yellow fever mosquito in Merced County.
Officials say the mosquito was found in the community of Le Grand. The mosquito is capable of transmitting several human diseases, including dengue, chikungunya, yellow fever, and Zika.
“This is the first detection of Aedes aegypti in Le Grand and the third city in Merced County to harbor the invasive Aedes mosquito. Having Aedes aegypti in our District is very concerning as it is an efficient vector in spreading Zika, dengue, chikungunya, and yellow fever viruses,” said Rhiannon Jones, General Manager of Merced County Mosquito Abatement District.
Aedes aegypti is a small (approx. ¼ inch), black and white day-biting mosquito that prefers to feed on humans. It lives in urban habitats and lays its eggs just above the water surface in small containers such as flower pots, plant saucers, pet bowls, and birdbath, according to officials.
Officials say residents can reduce the chances of being bitten by Aedes aegypti or other mosquitoes by taking the following precautions:
- Drain standing water. Mosquitoes prefer to lay eggs in stagnant water.
- Defend yourself against mosquitoes using repellents containing DEET, Picaridin, IR3535 or Oil of lemon Eucalyptus.
- Avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are present, typically Dawn and Dusk.
- Report neglected swimming pools to the District. Anonymous calls accepted.
To report mosquito-breeding problem areas and request service, Merced County residents should contact Merced County Mosquito Abatement District at (209) 722-1527, (800) 622-3242, or www.mcmosquito.org.