Los Angeles, Calif. – As the summer temperatures heat up, the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District (GLACVCD) wants to make sure residents stay safe from mosquito bites. West Nile virus replicates and spreads faster in hotter temperatures. The District expects to continue identifying increasing activity throughout the County as summer progresses and temperatures rise.
During the past week, the GLACVCD confirmed additional West Nile virus (WNV) positive mosquitoes collected from vector control traps located in the city of Bellflower, and unincorporated South Whittier. To date, WNV has been identified in seven LA County communities (use the link below to see where). Residents in these areas are encouraged to take precautions against bites when outdoors in the early morning and evening hours, and search their properties for standing water that may contribute to mosquito problems in their neighborhood.
Vector control advises residents to take the necessary precautions to avoid mosquito bites by using insect repellent. Effective repellents contain EPA-registered active ingredients such as DEET, Picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535. Residents should also dump and drain any standing water around the home. This prevents mosquitoes from laying their eggs in any container that can hold stagnant water.
West Nile virus is transmitted to people and animals through the bite of an infected mosquito. There is no cure for West Nile virus. One in five persons infected with West Nile virus will exhibit symptoms. Symptoms usually occur between five and 15 days, and can include fever, headache, body aches, nausea, or a skin rash. These symptoms can last for several weeks to months. One in 150 people infected with the virus will require hospitalization. Severe symptoms include high fever, muscle weakness, neck stiffness, coma, paralysis, and possibly death.
Invasive Aedes Mosquitoes Update
Invasive black-and-white mosquitoes remain a concern for vector control officials as summer progresses. Aedes mosquitoes are now widespread in many California communities. Residents are beginning to report day-biting mosquito problems again this year in various communities. The time to search for and remove containers that hold water is now. Vector control urges residents to stop the infestations from spreading to their homes.
Aedes mosquitoes are invasive to Los Angeles County and are efficient at transmitting (vectoring) Zika, chikungunya and dengue fever viruses. Those viruses are currently not transmitting from mosquitoes to people in L.A. County. However, the importance of avoiding mosquito bites remains the same with Aedes mosquitoes, just as they are with native species that carry West Nile virus.
If residents are still experiencing mosquito problems even after dumping and draining all standing water, they can receive help from the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District at (562) 944-9656 or visit www.ReportMosquitoes.org.