- Published on Monday, 09 July 2012 10:05
- Hits: 818
The Health Ministry yesterday warned the public to be extra vigilant on the dengue epidemic following more evidence showing the dengue mosquito had taken to breeding in ice-cream, yoghurt and margarine cups, drinks cans and all kinds of containers used to pack foods in addition to its normal breeding sources of used receptacles, overhead gutters,domestic wells and discarded tyres.
The ministry found the largest dengue mosquito breeding source to be discarded receptacles. “Mosquitoes are mostly using discarded food packs and containers to lay eggs,” a Health Ministry spokesman said.According to entomological surveys conducted by the Health Ministry from February to April, used receptacles accounted for 67 percent of the total mosquito breeding places in the North Western Province, 50 percent of the total mosquito breeding places in Central and Sabaragamuwa Provinces, 56 percent in the North Central Province, 49 percent in the Western Province, 43 percent in the Eastern Province, 30 percent in the Uva Province and 29 percent in the Northern Province. The Health Ministry informed food producers not to use plastic receptacles to pack foods and requested them to use alternative material such as cardboard packs to mitigate the dengue risk. They urged them to introduce eco-friendly food packs to the public as well.
The Ministry also requested the public to purchase food packed in cardboard containers and destroy used receptacles after use.
The Health Ministry also cautioned the public that the dengue mosquito is said to be more active from 6am to 10am and from 4pm to 6.30 pm and has extended its stinging period to 11pm.
Entomological surveys have also revealed the dengue mosquito is a double breeder and is the most powerful of all mosquitoes.
According to sources there are more than 2,500 species of mosquitoes worldwide and Sri Lanka is home to 250 such species.
Mosquitoes belong to a group of insects that require blood to develop fertile eggs. All, except the dengue mosquitoes, take the blood of all animals and humans. But the dengue mosquito only draws on human blood to help develop fertile eggs. Dengue mosquitoes have a life span of one month and lay eggs four times during their lifetime. They sting humans more than once.
Courtesy: Daily News