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Summer Isn’t Here Yet, But It’s Not Too Early To Start Thinking About Mosquitoes
The National Pest Management Association advises the public to take precautions as reports of early mosquito season emerge
FAIRFAX, Va. (May 22, 2013) – Although the official start of summer is a month away, several regions across the U.S. are issuing reports of an early emergence of mosquitoes. More concerning is that some states are already reporting specimens that are testing positive for West Nile virus (WNV). The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) advises the public that it is not too early to begin protecting themselves, family members and pets from mosquitoes when outdoors.
“Summer is almost here, and with it the season’s most pesky pest – the mosquito. While state agencies will soon be putting their abatement plans in motion, we advise the public to do their part to curb mosquito activity in their own back yards in the hopes of stemming the spread of WNV,” said Missy Henriksen, vice president of public affairs for the NPMA. “Mosquitoes need only about a half-inch of water to breed, so it is important to remove any standing water to help eliminate potential breeding grounds.
Last year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 5,387 human cases of WNV, 243 of which were fatal. These numbers reflect one of the biggest outbreaks of the virus ever in the United States and the deadliest year on record
“Of all the mosquito-borne illnesses, WNV is of greatest concern in the United States. In most cases, the virus is a mild infection with similar symptoms to a summer flu. However, in rare cases WNV is a potentially life-threatening infection,” noted Dr. Jorge Parada, medical advisor for the NPMA. “Anyone experiencing symptoms such as high fever, head and body aches, confusion and worsening weakness should seek medical attention.”
As the risk of WNV increases with prolonged periods of hot and dry weather conditions, the NPMA advises homeowners to eliminate all areas of standing water around the outside of the home now and to ensure all windows and doors have screens.
The NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 7,000 members, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry's commitment to the protection of public health, food and property. For more information, visit PestWorld.org.