State Govt and Gannawarra Shire working together to reduce mosquitos
Published on 06 January 2017
VICTORIAN GOVERNMENT AND GANNAWARRA SHIRE WORKING TOGETHER TO REDUCE MOSQUITO NUMBERS
Gannawarra Shire Council has joined sixteen other higher risk and flood-affected Councils across rural Victoria in receiving a special funding package to combat the spread of mosquitos this summer.
Mayor Brian Gibson said Council can now access initial funding of $120,176 to expand mosquito control activities and help prevent the spread of mosquito-borne diseases.
“This funding will allow Council to continue taking action to reduce mosquito numbers by expanding our annual surveillance activities including trapping adult mosquitoes to identify species and estimate numbers, testing sentinel chickens as the first indicator of disease, using control agents such as larvicides to stop mosquito larvae from growing and fogging where mosquito numbers are excessive,” Mayor Gibson explained.
Heavy rainfall and floods across the Gannawarra Shire late in 2016 led to ideal breeding conditions for mosquitoes that can spread disease. High numbers of mosquitos will continue over the summer months across rural Victoria.
Mosquitos can carry diseases such as Ross River virus, Barmah Forest virus, and Murray Valley Encephalitis (MVE) – all serious, infectious and potentially life-threatening in the case of MVE.
The annual ‘Beat the Bite’ campaign started a month early this year due to the increased mosquito numbers, and is now ramping up again through the holiday season. Mayor Gibson urges residents to take simple steps to protect themselves and their family from mosquito bites.
“The ‘Beat the Bite’ campaign has some great advice to keep residents safe and protected from the risk of mosquito borne diseases, including the following tips,
- Cover up. Wear long, loose fitting clothing because mosquitoes can bite through tight fitting clothing.
- Use effective mosquito repellents containing DEET or picaridin on all exposed skin.
- Control mosquito numbers. There’s a wide range of ‘knockdown sprays’ or vaporising devices for inside use, including caravans.
- Install flywire screens on all windows and self-closing wire screens on doors.
- Make sure mosquitoes can't breed around your property by removing stagnant water at least every week. This includes in flower pots, tyres, buckets, tins, bird baths and pet bowls.
- Empty children’s wading pools when not being used and keep fishponds stocked with fish.
- Use screens when camping. Mosquito nets or screens will help keep mosquitoes out of tents and added protection can be provided by treating the nets with an appropriate insecticide.
- Limit outdoor activity at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
If you have any concerns about your health, talk to your doctor or call NURSE-ON-CALL on 1300 606 024. For more information visit: Better Health Channel - https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/beat-the-bite.
For more information please contact Council on 5450 9333 or visit council’s website
Date: 6 January 2017
Media contact: Katrina Thorne T. 03 5450 9333 M. 0409 616 627