U.S. Government Stinks at Zika Containment
With the Zika virus knocking on our doors officials are starting to get worried about how we will handle the virus in the U.S. Experts say that the Zika virus will likely cross over into the states as the weather grows warmer this Spring and Summer. As of right now, the U.S. is sorely lacking in proper mosquito control methods.
Most of the efforts to control mosquitos in the U.S. target the nuisance night-biting mosquitos that breed in large bodies of water and come out at dusk to annoy us but don’t pose any real threat. Officials will drive on trucks with sprayers mounted on them and drive through cities spraying insecticide in the evenings. However, this type of patchwork mosquito control is completely useless against the Aedes aegypti mosquitos that carry the Zika virus.
Aedes aegypti mosquitos are out and about during the day, and can breed in miniscule amounts of water. This means that the insecticide fogging campaigns already in use will likely miss those mosquitos breeding in flowerpots, trash, tires, and small pools of water. Aedes mosquito eggs can also cling to the surfaces of containers and wait for the next rain to revive them.
The CDC is now focusing on boosting these mosquito control efforts. Dr. Thomas Frieden, Director of the CDC, stated that “health departments need to take a “four corners approach,” targeting the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes indoors and outdoors as well as focusing on killing both larvae and adult insects.” Hopefully, our officials will have all this taken care of by the time the Zika virus crosses over into the U.S.
Have you seen mosquito control efforts in your city? How should our officials proceed in order to better protect us from the Aedes aegypti mosquito