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Tropical Storm Colin’s Possible Legacy: Prime Mosquito Breeding Conditions

The Aedes Aegypti and Aedes Albopictus mosquitoes can transmit Zika and other tropical diseases.

With Tropical Storm Colin gone, mosquito control boards are asking residents to get rid of standing water.

Tropical Storm Colin dumped anywhere from one to four-and-a-half inches of rain as it cut through Florida. Now mosquito control officials are sounding the alarm about the possibility of more mosquitoes – and the threat of Zika virus – that could come from the storm.

Dr. Christopher Hunter with Orange County is reminding residents to get rid of standing water.

“It can be your gutters if you have issues with your gutters draining,” Hunter said. “Bird baths and other water features people have in their houses that they don’t realize the water stands in are frequently breeding grounds. A lot of times containers we keep plants in or toys left out and even plant life like bromeliad flowers.”

Hunter said Aedes Aegypti and Aedes Albopictus mosquitoes are well adapted to urban environments and humans are their primary source of food.

“If you’re getting bit on your property, they’re probably breeding on your property or your neighbor’s property,” Hunter said. “They only fly at a maximum of 500 yards from where they’re born, and most stay a lot closer than that.”

Florida has logged more than 170 cases of Zika, including two new cases from Central Florida announced Tuesday. Early studies suggest 1 in 5,000 women who catch Zika while pregnant will have babies birth defects, but the risk may be higher in the earliest stages of pregnancy.

WMFE is a partner with Health News Florida, a statewide collaborative reporting on health care.

Health reporting on WMFE is supported in part by AdventHealth.

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Abe Aboraya

About Abe Aboraya

Health Reporter

Abe Aboraya started writing for newspapers in High School. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe ... Read Full Bio »