Mosquito Squad of Central MA

How worried should Massachusetts residents be about Zika Virus?

You’re probably hearing more than you want to hear about the Zika Virus and it certainly is scary. The other mosquito-borne viruses, and tick borne viruses, affect only the person being bitten. It’s a lot scarier when the virus can affect an unborn child. Please note that, as of this writing, it cannot be said with absolute certainly that the Zika Virus is what’s causing microcephaly in some children born of affected mothers. The evidence appears nearly conclusive but nothing definitive and concrete has been published to do confirming the correlation.

Here’s what’s important here in Massachusetts…

  1. Without mosquitoes the virus will not spread.  So in Massachusetts there is no reason for concern until mosquito season.
  2. The Aedes Aegypti (yellow fever mosquito) is container breeder and is not a good flyer so they are easier to control.  Get rid of the water and treat.  They don’t travel more than 300-400 from their breeding site.
  3. There have been other mosquito virus outbreaks in our region and they have always been contained, however not eliminated.
  4. My concern as a mosquito professional is I don’t know if other species of mosquitoes can carry this virus.  We have 51 species of mosquitoes in our area. Some of which may not be present in South America so it may not be known if other species can transmit. It defies logic that the Aedes Aegypti is the only mosquito able to transmit this virus but nothing conclusive is known yet.
  5. Unfortunately we are in a wait-and-see situation here in MA but we can apply some logic and reduce some concern.  Brazil is a mosquito paradise, wet and hot most of the year.  Mosquitoes will survive and breed year round and the Aedes Aegypti is very common in Brazil.  So in Brazil there is a perfect storm for the spread of Zika. Zika has been around for a long time but it is only recent that the connection with Microcephaly has been made. While we should be concerned and take precautions, we will never be like Brazil.
  6. If you are planning a trip to South America and are pregnant or planning on getting pregnant, please do your Internet research at the CDC website Zika page and the World Health Organization (WHO) Zika website page.
Dave Macchia mosquito protection author and tick protection author.

Dave Macchia is the owner of Mosquito Squad of Central Mass and the author of 2 blogs about mosquito control and tick control

Like all mosquito-borne diseases, the only prevention is to reduce or eliminate contact with mosquitoes that could be virus and disease carriers. Our barrier spray protection service reduces upwards of 90% of the mosquitoes in the area we protect. Call now to get signed up for mosquito protection for this spring: (877) 387-7823.