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Tiger mosquitos spread anxiety

Cindy Vallejo
Staff Writer

The East Coast is not the only place where tiny black and white tiger mosquitoes are emerging.

Invasive tiger mosquitoes have been spotted in the cities of El Monte, South Monte and unincorporated areas in Los Angeles County south of Duarte.

Tiger mosquitoes, native to Southeast Asia, are tiny black and white insects that are active in daylight.

They are aggressive and can spread diseases including West nile and Yellow fever.

They are usually seen near tiny sources of water, such as water filled containers or flower pot saucers.

The San Gabriel Valley Mosquitoes and Vector Control District and the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District are teaming up to identify invasive tiger mosquito infestations and work aggressively to control the population.

Both districts are working to inform the communities about this infestation of tiger mosquitoes through press releases and advertisements on radio stations.

“We are a local government public health agency, and if you have these tiger mosquitoes around your area, please give us a call and we can come out with no charge,” said Kelly Middleton of the San Gabriel Valley MVCD.

They are also educating students at schools about the mosquitoes, and hiring and training specialists for door to door inspections in areas affected by the tiger mosquitoes.

Some residents worry that this mosquito infestation will significantly change the way communities enjoy outdoor activities.

“I feel like the tiger mosquitoes are a burden on the environment especially since I do live near the cities where they are establishing,” said senior creative writing major Ashle Huizar.

The tiger mosquitoes do carry a risk of spreading diseases.

“We are currently trying to confirm the point of entry of where these tiger mosquitoes came from and how they got to establish so quickly,” Crystal Brown, public information officer for GLACVCD, said.

GLACVCD offers some tips to help reduce the the spread of tiger mosquitoes.

The tips include getting rid of containers of standing water as well as trash or plastic bags under bushes or behind walls.

These objects are likely to accumulate water.

Also, people in the at-risk areas should water plants at the soil level, rather than spraying leaves, so no water accumulates on the leaves.

For more information, call the SGVMVC at 626-814-9466, or the GLACVC at 562-944-9656.

Cindy Vallejo can be reached at cindy.vallejo@laverne.edu.

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