Region's on mosquito alert

PLENTY of standing water and the threat of dengue fever prompted a mosquito alert in the Rockhampton region yesterday.

Residents are being urged to get rid of all potential breeding grounds for mozzies and take precautions against being bitten by the pests, which can spread potentially fatal disease.

Cr Tony Williams, who chairs Rockhampton Regional Council’s health committee, said people had a vital role to play to keep dengue at bay.

Last year the disease came as close as Mackay and the unseasonably wet start to spring has increased the threat.

Council officers will be “extremely busy” this season trying to manage and control mosquitoes, he said.

“Many of the species that cause concern, and are associated with complaints and requests for misting, are not transmitters of disease, but they do have an extremely high nuisance factor.

“Dengue fever is a viral disease transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. It is a container breeder, so the most effective method to control it is through the removal, or treatment of, breeding sites,” he said.

Residents are asked to inspect their house and yard and remove any objects that collect water. Other advice includes cleaning out roof gutters, ensuring rainwater tanks are screened, maintaining swimming pools, washing out birdbaths and ornamental pools every week and ensuring ponds are stocked with suitable native fish.

“If there’s no water, there’s no mosquitoes,” said Cr Williams, who also warns people to use insect repellent and screen their homes to prevent mozzies from getting inside.

The most effective method to control it is through the removal or treatment of breeding sites



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