Ledge Light Health District is urging all residents of Groton, Ledyard, North Stonington and Stonington to avoid outdoor activities from one hour before dawn and dusk to one hour after because of mosquitoes that have tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis.
Health officials said Tuesday that mosquitoes trapped in Groton and Ledyard have tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis, or EEE.
Mosquitoes previously trapped in North Stonington and Stonington had tested positive for EEE and health officials said some of the mosquito traps contained mosquito species that are known to bite humans.
EEE is a rare but serious disease caused by a virus that is transmitted by mosquitoes, the Ledge Light Health District warns. The virus has been found in trapped mosquitoes in Connecticut, but only one person has died from EEE, they said.
Health officials also urge people to take additional precautions to avoid mosquito bites:
- Be sure door and window screens are tight fitting and in good repair.
- While outdoors, wear shoes, socks, long pants, and long-sleeved shirts. Clothing material should be tightly woven.
- Use mosquito netting if sleeping outdoors.
- Consider using mosquito repellent when it is necessary to be outdoors and always use them according to label instructions. The most effective repellents contain DEET or Picaridin. Oil of lemon eucalyptus is also effective for brief periods of exposure.
- When using DEET, use the lowest concentration effective for the time spent outdoors (for example, 6% lasts approximately 2 hours and 20% for 4 hours) and wash treated skin when returning indoors. Do not apply under clothing, to wounds or irritated skin, the hands of children, or to infants less than 2 months.
Reduce mosquitoes around the home:
- Dispose of water-holding containers, such as ceramic pots, used tires, and tire swings, clogged gutters.
- Drill holes in the bottom of containers such as those used for recycling.
- Change water in bird baths on a weekly basis.
- Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, and cover pools when not in use.
- Use landscaping to eliminate areas where water can collect on your property.
The state releases the data on mosquitoes that tested positive for EEE and West Nile Virus statewide. The numbers released Tuesday say 56 mosquitoes have tested positive for West Nile virus and 83 mosquitoes have tested positive for EEE.