A WET and warm start to the year has provided the right environment for mosquitoes, with 13 cases of Ross River virus reported in Emerald this year.
Central Highlanders are being urged to take precautions around mosquitoes and try to avoid being bitten.
Director of Environmental Health for Central Queensland Public Health Unit Paul Florian said this included wearing long clothing and applying insect repellent to any exposed skin.
“If you have been bitten by mosquitoes and feel ill please see your doctor,” Mr Florian said.
Mr Florian said the 13 cases of Ross River, as well as one of Barmah Forest virus in Emerald represented a “slight rise” in notifications.
“This is slightly above the average for Emerald, however it is not considered an outbreak,” he said.
Barmah Forest virus was also found in a Tieri resident, with two from Blackwater struck down by Ross River.
Mosquitoes breed in containers that hold water such as buckets, old tyres, tarpaulins and black plastic, pot plant bases, vases, boats, tin cans and plastic containers, roof guttering, rainwater tanks with damaged or missing screens, bird baths, striking containers for plant cuttings, drain sumps, fallen palm fronds and coconut shells.
The best prevention is to take precautions against being bitten by mosquitos:
Avoid being outside during times of heavy infestation of mosquitoes.
Use insect repellents and wear protective, light coloured clothing.
Screen living and sleeping areas.
Use indoor surface spray, mozzie zappers and coils.
Once a week, check property for mosquito breeding.
“If you have been bitten by mosquitoes and feel ill please see your doctor.”
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