MCRU issues warning over mosquito breeding

| 04/09/2009

(CNS): Following leaked information that suggested the Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU) would not be engaging in its aerial spraying campaign because of government cuts in overtime, the unit has issued a press release telling residents to take proper control measures around their homes to reduce breeding of the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which has the potential to transmit dengue fever, and greater vigilance on the part of residents would complement the unit’s routine vector control exercises aimed at eliminating these potentially dangerous mosquitoes.

MRCU Research Manager Fraser Allen said the MRCU survey officers continually perform house-to-house inspections throughout the island paying particular attention to highly populated areas such as George Town and West Bay. Allen explained that containers are treated with larvicides to kill the mosquito larvae or are overturned to prevent collection of rain water which would initiate breeding. Surfaces where the adult mosquito might rest are also treated with adulticide sprays by the survey crews.

Despite those efforts however, public action is still necessary to keep the mosquito population in check, save resources and prevent the spread of mosquito-borne diseases.

“Aedes aegypti mosquito larvae thrive in home settings, particularly in containers such as flower pots, vases and water troughs which may hold fresh rain water for extended periods of time,” Allen said, improperly discarded garbage such as old tyres collect rain water, also facilitating the breeding of the Aedes aegypti larvae.

“The fact that these mosquitoes breed mostly in domestic environments and as a result of human activity, gives residents a major role to play in eliminating the insect. By taking simple actions such as emptying water vessels regularly and punching holes in old household items prior to disposal, residents can prevent breeding and reduce the chance of a dengue fever outbreak in the Cayman Islands,” Allen advised.

Turning over buckets and placing a screen cover over drums used in water collection residents would assist with at least 60% of the control of this mosquito throughout the islands. While Cayman has not had a major incidence of this mosquito-borne disease, Allen pointed to outbreaks in a number of regional countries last year including Jamaica and Cuba.

 “Although Cayman remains one of the few Caribbean countries in which local transmission of dengue fever does not occur, widespread regional travel means that from time to time, we do see a number of dengue cases in returning residents or visitors.

“Infected persons travelling to Cayman present a real possibility of local transmission,” Allen said, adding that this reinforces the need for precautionary measures. 


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  1. Anonymous says:

    Come on Government Leaders!  Shame on You!!  Cut back your own salaries!!  Not stop spraying for mosquitos!!   Are you nuts???????  You won’t have any money to pay for your salaries if you stop spraying the mosquitos, cause the tourists will disappear!!  Lord help us in these Cayman Islands, we are going from dumb to dumber to dumbest!!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Why is it that the spraying program should need overtime? That’s ridiculous! If managers were actually managing, they would have budgeted properly for a spraying program NOT reliant on expensive overtime. After all, it’s not as if mosquitoes are a new problem.

    I suspect this is a histrionic gesture from the PS in the responsible ministry-he has done it before when there have been budget problems.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Camana Bay has become unbearable recently with the mossies.  The new walkway by the shore might become a very itchy night out!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Anyone know if the Mosquito planes are to be divested????

    • Anonymous says:

      I understand that the Camama Bay owners are concerned about the mosquito nuisance and may wish to buy the spray planes to spray camama bay

      • Oz Keetoh says:

        Well I am not going back there in the evening again until it is sorted out. 

  5. Anonymous says:

    Snug habour is a nightmare at the moment, thought I heard the Mosi plane and it turned out to be a huse a** mosqito. Lots of no see um’s to, getting chowd when out with the dogs

    It’s a good way of getting the publics attention that is for sure.

  6. Mozzie Fodder says:

    Watch out for price gouging on cans of OFF!!!

  7. Anonymous says:

     There is a HUGE problem at Camana Bay!  Even in Restaurants and shops! The outdoor movies are actually hazardous to the health of the people of the Cayman Islands!


    They must continue to spray!

  8. Mos Quito says:

    Which would be more effective checking my flour jar or CIG keeping up spraying at the normal levels?  Mmmmm?  Anyone else noticed more mossies around recently.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yup – I’ve noticed its particularly bad this last week between the areasI frequent (GT & BT).  I am sure the situation is no different elsewhere.

      I understand the government has to make cuts but in my opinion, this should not be one of them.   And I would have thought that the increased risk of dengue, not to mention the spiralling costs of treating it would have necessitated continued spraying, not cessation of it.  There are plenty of other places government can save money rather than putting the public at risk like this.


      • Anne Bonny says:

        So cut overtime by assigning a personnel on a night shift.  he does not spray during the day, so give him the day off and let him start his shift say from 2-10pm.  That way, it won’t be considered an overtime if he goes out there to spray at 5-8pm because it’s within his shift.