Jefferson Parish getting head start on fighting Zika virus

Antwan Harris talks to officials in Jefferson Parish who are getting a head start on controlling the Zika virus.

JEFFERSON PARISH, La. -- It's soccer time for a junior league in Gretna and Debbie Weil has come to see her grandson.

Jefferson Parish officials are getting a head start on preventing the spread of the Zika virus. Parks are known for an abundance of mosquitoes and Weil said her main concern is for young mothers.

"I'm concerned about the affect it has on newborns," Weil said.

It's why the parish is preparing its mosquito control now as the coming weeks will be vital to prevention.

"This spring we are doing more as far as preparation and set up more traps to look for these mosquitoes that can transmit the virus," Jefferson Parish Entomologist Steve Pavlovich said.

The two aggressive mosquitoes known to our area are able to carry the virus and Professor Dawn Wesson of Tulane University's Tropical Medicine department said they easily adapt to human behavior, in a way comparable to rats. The things we get rid of could be contributing to the mosquito problem.

"When you think about our garbage and the things we discard, these mosquitoes end up breeding in what we throw away especially if it holds water," Wesson said.

Now the goal is to make sure Jefferson Parish gets a jump on the mosquito nuisance before it can become a full blown problem.

 


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