This past week NC Governor Roy Cooper announced that he would be directing $4 million to fight a new giant mosquito epidemic now spreading through our state due to Hurricane Florence’s flood waters, according to a press release.
“To help local communities in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, I’ve directed state funds for mosquito control efforts to protect people who live in hard-hit areas.” Gov. Cooper said.
NC State University entomology professor Michael Reiskind told The Fayetteville Observer Newspaper that Hurricane Florence’s floodwater has woke up massive numbers of dormant eggs from the mosquito species Psorophora ciliata. These mosquitoes, also called “gallinippers,” are most well known for their painful bite and post-flood swarms.
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Not only do these massive mosquito swarmps cause painful bites, but many of them are now carrying deadly viruses.
According to the governor’s press release, “the most commonly reported mosquito-borne illnesses that can be acquired in North Carolina are LaCrosse encephalitis, West Nile virus and Eastern equine encephalitis.”
DHHS’ Division of Public Health is now urging residents in North Carolina to pay attention to any standing water on their property and to watch for hatching mosquitoes. They recommend using natural BTI on standing water to quickly kill mosquito larvae.