County sprays pesticides after finding mosquitoes known to spread Zika

SAN DIEGO – Aedes mosquito larvae, which has potential to carry Zika, were recently found in the San Diego neighborhood of South Park, prompting the county to spray two-city blocks, health officials announced Thursday.

County posted signs around South Park to let residents know they will be spray for mosquitoes.

County posted signs around South Park to let residents know they will be spray for mosquitoes.

The County of San Diego’s Vector Control Program hand-sprayed a two-city block area -- bounded by Grape Street on the north, Elm Street on the south, 31st Street to the west and 32nd Street to the east -- Friday mid-morning as a preventive measure.

"Zika virus has not been found in mosquito larvae in San Diego. Aedes agypti mosquitoes are known to live in San Diego County as well as their larvae, but to date, no mosquitoes have tested positive for Zika. There is no evidence of local transmission of Zika in California," according to California Department of Public Health.

The larvae will be tested as a precaution.

Signs have been posted around the neighborhood to let residents know about the spraying.

County officials said aedes mosquito larvae were found in the same area as an unidentified person in San Diego who possibly has the mosquito-born illness.

The sick resident traveled to a country where tropical diseases like chikungunya, dengue fever and the Zika virus are active, and developed symptoms upon returning home. State officials are expediting tests to determine if the person has a mosquito-borne disease.

FOX 5 spoke with the resident, who asked to remain anonymous. He said he traveled to Costa Rica and Guadalajara.

"I had diarrhea and I went rafting so I figured I swallowed a lot of water. I had some body aches and pains but again, maybe I slept wrong. Everything had an excuse and then I had conjunctivitis in both eyes -- pink eye -- and that’s when they raised the question. So, I saw a doctor and they tested me for it.”

Meanwhile, the resident said he's also been advised to follow certain guidelines.

"They want me to wear long sleeves and pants and avoid any areas that have mosquitoes. They told me no sex with women who intend on being pregnant in the next year.”

Currently, there is no positive diagnosis for any mosquito-borne illness. The man expects to find out results in two weeks.

County vector control said the pesticide, Pyrenone 25-5, poses low risks to people and pets. However, people who would prefer to avoid or minimize their exposure to the pesticide can take simple steps:

  •  stay inside and bring pets indoors if possible;
  •  close doors and windows, and turn off fans that bring outdoor air inside the home;
  •  cover ornamental fishponds to avoid direct exposure;
  •  rinse fruits and vegetables from your garden with water before cooking or eating; and
  •  beekeepers and those with insects kept outdoors are encouraged to shelter hives and habitats during treatments.

Normal activities can be resumed a half-hour after the treatment.

Vector control plans to continue trapping for Aedes mosquitoes in the area and nearby locations for several weeks.

Officials reminded all county residents to prevent mosquito breeding by getting rid of standing water in saucers, old tires, buckets and the like; avoid bites by remaining indoors at dusk and dawn when they're most active, and wearing long sleeves and pants.

Report daytime bites or discoveries of Aedes mosquitoes to vector control at 858-694-2888.