Sunday, February 8, 2009

Here, There, and Everywhere

We had the opportunity to visit Licab last weekend (Feb 07) and noticed the "unbelievable" swarm of mosquitoes at home considering that screens have already been installed in the windows.

Outside, we can see groups of mosquitoes thriving in the house walls and hovering in trees and plants.

Now having to see mosquitoes in the house is not uncommon. What's surprising actually is having to see an unprecedented increase of mosquitoes trying to take a prick on your skins.

I have attempted to take pictures using my phone, however, these following pictures are the best that I can get (my phone is not well-designed to take pics, by the way):

Not to mention, this is only a part of the house wall, so we can actually see the same scenarios in other parts.

Picture is a little blurred but when you look closer to the leaves at the right side, you may notice about 4 or 5 mosquitoes parked.

The insects didn't even bother flying when the phone/cam went nearby.

Here's another shot at the mosquitoes in the wall:

Other people have also informed us that this same scenario happens 'buong Licab'. They said you wouldn't be able to stand outside your house during nighttime because mosquitoes will come and attack you.
True enough, when we came to Sta. Maria on Sunday afternoon, we saw numerous groups of mosquitoes.
'Normal yan ngayon sa mga bayan na ma-palay'. So hindi lang pala sa Licab may ganitong problema. It may be that mosquitoes have thrived and hibernated in the rice fields since there are lots of water where they can breed their eggs.
But though even towns encounter this same problem, the issue must still be addressed.
==================== enumerates the possible diseases that mosquitoes might carry, as well as possible ways in order to minimize, if not to avoid the swarming of mosquitoes in our surroundings.

The diseases
Thriving in humid and damp areas, mosquitoes reproduce quickly. Laying eggs in shallow pools of water, the eggs hatch and grow, becoming adult, biting mosquitoes. And these biting pests can carry a myriad of diseases:

West Nile Virus – now considered a seasonal epidemic in North America, West Nile virus makes the news nearly every summer. It causes inflammation of the brain, and can be fatal in some patients.

Malaria – this mosquito-borne disease can be found around the world, primarily in Central and South America, Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, and the South Pacific. Symptoms can vary from one patient to another, and include fever, body aches, coma, and death.

Dengue fever – this disease can be found in the tropics, and comes from a certain type of mosquito that is active during the day time.

Yellow fever – found in South America and Africa, this disease does have a vaccine. However, in areas where the vaccine is unavailable, the mosquitoes transmit the disease from one person to another.

Heartworm – a parasite affecting household pets, the larvae are transmitted by mosquitoes. Untreated, heartworms can clog up the heart, causing cardiovascular problems and death.

The best way to protect your family and pets is to prevent mosquitoes from biting in the first place. There are several ways that you can do this:

Limit breeding areas – mosquitoes love to breed in shallow, still water. Prevent mosquitoes from breeding on your property by keeping ponds healthy, clean, and well circulated. If you have a pond, keep it stocked with fish that will eat mosquitoes and the larvae, including koi and bass. Dump out any standing water that might collect in buckets, toys, or other areas around your yard after every rain.

Use repellents and traps – If you are going to be out during mosquito season, make sure that everyone in your family puts on mosquito repellent. There are special products on the market for both children and pets. You can also consider a mosquito trap that will attract and kill mosquitoes, protecting up to an acre of area.

Be mosquito smart – avoid going out at dusk or dawn, since these are prime mosquito times. If you are going out at a time or to an area that is mosquito infested, wear long sleeves, pants, and socks to protect your skin.
Residents should take the initiative in taking care of their respective households and surroundings. But it will definitely be of great help when Barangay and Municipal officials could strategize, make ordinances, do clean-up drives, or even provide seminars so people could be made aware of this mosquito problem.

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