The San Joaquin County Mosquito and Vector Control District has detected the invasive mosquito Aedes aegypti in Escalon.
The District’s mosquito surveillance system discovered mosquito eggs laid in a unique trap placed to attract Ae. aegypti females. Confirmation of the invasive species came after the eggs were reared in the District’s laboratory.
“This find comes on the heels of confirmation of the invasive Aedes found in Ripon,” said Aaron Devencenzi, Public Information Officer with the District. “Most importantly, the message is the same. Reporting daytime biting mosquitoes to the District is critical to suppressing this species which can become quite a nuisance and a potential carrier of mosquito-borne disease.”
The District is increasing surveillance efforts by placing extra traps used to collect adult mosquitoes and mosquito eggs. Additionally, the District’s staff will be conducting door-to-door inspections in Escalon in the residential area near the recent detection. The inspection boundaries are North to Mission Street, South to Highway 120, East to Campbell Avenue and West to Escalon-Bellota Road.
The public’s help is crucial in controlling the spread of this mosquito population. First, officials said, residents are asked to call in daytime biting mosquitoes to the District. These mosquitoes are a small (about one-quarter inch) black and white mosquito that bites aggressively during the day. Ae. aegypti lays its eggs just above the water line in small containers and vessels that hold water, such as dishes under potted plants, birdbaths, ornamental fountains, tin cans, or discarded tires. Second, residents should inspect their yard and outside their homes and dump even the smallest amount of standing water. Be sure to clean and scrub bird baths and pet watering dishes weekly and dump the water from overflow dishes under potted plants. Also, remove any unnecessary containers and trash around properties.
The first detection of Ae. aegypti in San Joaquin County was from a sample of mosquitoes collected on August 6, 2019, in the vicinity of Brookside in Stockton. Commonly known as the Yellow Fever mosquito, Ae. aegypti has the potential to transmit several viruses, including dengue, chikungunya, Zika, and yellow fever. These viruses are currently not known to be transmitted by mosquitoes in San Joaquin County or California.
The District reminds the public to implement the following steps to avoid mosquito bites: Apply repellents containing EPA registered ingredients such as DEET, picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, or IR3535, Para-menthane-diol (PMD) when outdoors, according to label instructions. Wear long-sleeve shirts, long pants, socks, and shoes when mosquitoes are most active. Be sure window and door screens are in good repair to prevent mosquitoes from entering your home.
Residents experiencing mosquito bites during the day should report them immediately to San Joaquin County Mosquito & Vector Control District at (209) 982-4675, 1-800-300-4675 or visit www.sjmosquito.org.