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Mosquitoes in Groton and Ledyard test positive for EEE

Female mosquito beginning to feed on my wrist; 2x lifesize in camera. Second in a series of four.

GROTON — Ledge Light Health District announced Tuesday morning that mosquitoes that were trapped in both Groton and Ledyard have tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE).

This is in addition to the previously announced positive mosquitoes in North Stonington and Stonington. Officials say some of the mosquito traps contained mosquito species that are known to bite humans.

EEE is rare but can be a serious disease caused by a virus that is transmitted by mosquitoes. Officials say historically, the virus has been found in trapped mosquitoes in the state, but only one person has died from EEE.

Officials advise residents of Groton, Ledyard, North Stonington, and Stonington to avoid outdoor activities around dusk and dawn.

They also advise the following precautions:

• Be sure door and window screens are tight-fitting and in good repair.
• While outdoors, wear shoes, socks, long pants, and long-sleeved shirts. Clothing material should be tightly woven.
• Use mosquito netting if sleeping outdoors.
• Consider using mosquito repellent when it is necessary to be outdoors and
always use them according to label instructions. The most effective repellents
contain DEET or Picaridin. Oil of lemon eucalyptus is also effective for brief
periods of exposure.
• When using DEET, use the lowest concentration effective for the time spent
outdoors (for example, 6% lasts approximately 2 hours and 20% for 4 hours)
and wash treated skin when returning indoors. Do not apply under clothing, to
wounds or irritated skin, the hands of children, or to infants less than 2 months.

Measures to reduce mosquitoes around the home include:

• Dispose of water-holding containers, such as ceramic pots, used tires, and tire
Swings, clogged gutters.
• Drill holes in the bottom of containers such as those used for recycling.
• Change water in birdbaths on a weekly basis.
• Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, and cover pools when not in use.
• Use landscaping to eliminate areas where water can collect on your property.

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