In light of recent advice from the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) regarding the Ross River virus, Wellington Shire Council is urging residents to protect themselves from mosquitos.
DHHS has advised Ross River has been detected in mosquitos in the Gippsland Lakes and around Ninety Mile Beach.
DHHS is responsible for public health, including communicable diseases, of which, Council’s mosquito management activities support. Council has conducted the usual seasonal spraying sessions at the Honeysuckles, Loch Sport and Seaspray.
However due to the drought conditions, there has been lower mosquito activity recorded in traps and through other monitoring methods.
Council’s mosquito management activities can only have limited impact on overall mosquito numbers, so residents and visitors are urged to take action to help prevent mosquitoes from breeding on their properties and taking steps for their own personal protection.
Some useful tips to help prevent from being bitten:
• Apply mosquito repellent regularly (every four hours). Repellents containing DEET or Picaridin are recommended, and are most effective and long lasting in a lotion form
• Attach insect screens to the windows and doors of your house to allow air in and keep mosquitoes out
• Avoid outside areas at dawn and dusk
• Use an insecticide in sleeping areas, according to instructions
• Wear light coloured, loose fitting clothes with long sleeves and long trousers Mosquitoes are attracted to dark coloured clothes and can bite through tight clothes
• Ensure flyscreens on houses, caravans and annexes are in good condition with no gaps
• When camping, take precautions such as using flyscreens on caravans and tents, and by sleeping under mosquito nets
• Take particular care while fishing, ensuring that you follow personal precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.
For further information about how to avoid being bitten by mosquitos, please visit our website www.wellington.vic.gov.au, visit betterhealth.vic.gov.au/beat-the-bite or contact the Environmental Health Office on 1300 366 244.