Invasive mosquito in Delhi, CA.

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Mosquitos caught overnight sit on a piece of paper in the Merced County Mosquito Repellent District offices in Merced, California on Wednesday April 5, 2017.

Mosquitos caught overnight sit on a piece of paper in the Merced County Mosquito Repellent District offices in Merced, California on Wednesday April 5, 2017.

akuhn@mercedsun-star.com

Merced County’s Mosquito Protection District urges citizens to take action after the Delhi area has found invasive mosquitoes that can transmit diseases.

According to the district, the invasive mosquito Aedes aegypti was identified in the region on September 29.

“It is able to transmit several human diseases such as chikungunya, dengue fever, yellow fever and zika, according to a press release from the Merced County Mosquito Abatement District.

No travel cases were reported in Merced County this year, but the mosquito has spread and established itself throughout most of the county, the district said.

According to the publication, the Aedes aegypti is a small black and white daytime mosquito about 1 cm long that prefers to feed on humans. The mosquito lays its eggs in small containers directly above the water surface and lives in urban habitats.

“It is imperative that citizens do their part in eliminating standing water sources in their backyards to reduce the spread of mosquito populations,” General Manager Rhiannon Jones said in a press release.

“These mosquitoes only live in urban habitats and spread throughout the community when there is persistent water in people’s backyards. Most people do not know that these mosquitoes can lay eggs in small amounts of water, like a bottle cap, and even complete their life cycle in people’s homes. ”

At high temperatures, according to the release, the mosquito can complete its life cycle in just five days.

The Mosquito Abatement District is asking residents to inspect their property and dispose of any standing water immediately.

Those who live in urban, residential areas and are bitten by mosquitoes during the day are encouraged to contact the Merced County Mosquito Abatement District.

The district said it will continue surveillance efforts and reduce mosquito populations through soil treatments and house inspections. The district said its primary concern is public health regarding mosquitoes and mosquito-borne diseases, taking into account social distancing related to COVID-19.

“There were higher numbers of people calling to report mosquito activity in their neighborhood, which was great,” Jones said in the press release. “Now, more than ever, citizens must play a more active role in tipping and throwing water.”

According to the district, residents can take some precautions to reduce the chance of being bitten by Aedes aegypti or other mosquitos.

These precautions include draining stagnant water as mosquitoes prefer to lay eggs in stagnant water and use repellants that contain DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or lemon eucalyptus oil.

Other precautions include avoiding going outdoors when mosquitos are present, which is usually the case in the morning or evening light – and reporting neglected swimming pools to the district. Anonymous calls are accepted depending on the release.

Merced County residents can report mosquito problem areas and request service by calling Merced County’s Mosquito Abatement District at 209-722-1527, toll-free at 800-622-3242, or online at the Merced County’s website Mosquito Abatement District.

According to the district, additional information about Aedes aegypti can be found on the California Department of Health’s website.

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