What's Buggin' Ya Newsletter | Page 2

Zika Virus

What you need to know about the virus & mosquitoes.......

Zika has been all over the news lately and you may be wondering what it is and should you be worried?

Zika is a type of virus called an arbovirus that is transmitted by an infected mosquito. Specifically, it is transmitted by mosquitoes in teh genus Aedes (Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus). These mosquitoes are generally daytime feeders and like to bite below the knees. But, if you have a lot of light in your yard at night, they will be active in the evenings as well.

These types of mosquitoes are container breeders, attracted to shiny water and dark objects holding water. This means that they do not lay their eggs in ditches, lakes, or storm drains. They lay their eggs in our backyards. WE breed these mosquitoes!

In order to battle Zika, we must all do our part in reducing mosquitoes in our own backyards.

Aedes aegypti (right) and Aedes albopictus (left) are black mosquitoes with white marking on the legs and thorax (back).

Surveillance by A&M San Antonio researches have found that Aedes aegypti is more prevalent in San Antonio urban and suburban areas than other mosquitoes. This is troubling as this is the mosquito that has been targeted as the main vector for Zika.

Mosquitoes require water to complete their lifecycle. If you reduce the water, you reduce the adult form which transmits diseases. Even a bottle cap turned upside down can breed mosquitoes.

Photo by American Mosquito Control Association