SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY, Calif- There's a buzz in the air and it can be deadly. A mosquito usually only seen in tropical areas is popping up in areas surrounding the central coast. It has bitten in the Central Valley, Fresno and San Mateo County.
The mosquitoes have an acquired taste and it's you. "These mosquitoes actually enjoy biting people they are one of their favorite hosts," said Curt Batson, the Director of Environmental Health in San Luis Obispo.
They even have a preferred time of day. "These mosquitoes bite a couple hours after dawn and a couple hours before dusk so they are called day biters," said Batson. They are capable of carrying yellow fever, dengue and other diseases.
"If they do somehow contract those diseases then it is easily transmitted to humans," said Batson. Yellow fever and dengue can give you flu like symptoms and can even be deadly. "It can range from mild to severe and even death," said Batson.
A lake could be a breeding ground for the mosquito but what's more concerning is that it can reproduce in just a teaspoon of water. "It can be a dog water dish, a pond in your backyard, a fountain that's not kept," said Batson.
They are also usually found in tropical areas, but that is changing according to Batson. "As the climate changes and things warm up those organisms that we haven't seen in a long time will be able to survive now."
Health officials say to use mosquito repellent when outdoors, wear long sleeves, and make sure your screens are working properly at your home. Also, poor out any stagnant water like a planter dish.
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