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Public urged to keep up anti-mosquito efforts
     The Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) today (June 27) announced that the monthly gravidtrap index for Aedes albopictus for May was 10.5 per cent, at Level 2, indicating that the distribution of Aedes albopictus in the areas surveyed was fairly extensive. Relevant government departments have stepped up mosquito prevention and control actions.

     Among the 64 survey areas, the area gravidtrap index in six areas (namely Sai Wan, Shau Kei Wan and Sai Wan Ho, Sai Kung Town, Ngau Liu and Muk Min Shan, Ma On Shan, and Lai King) exceeded the alert level of 20 per cent. The gravidtraps were mostly found in the vicinity of public and private residential areas, schools, recreational and sports facilities and public places. The FEHD has collaborated with relevant government departments by taking immediate action to strengthen mosquito prevention and control work in the above-mentioned areas. 

     Moreover, the monthly density index for Aedes albopictus in May was 1.3, which represented that an average of 1.3 Aedes albopictus adults were found in the Aedes-positive gravidtraps, indicating that the number of adult Aedes albopictus was not high in the areas surveyed. The gravidtrap and density indices for Aedes albopictus in different survey areas as well as information on mosquito prevention and control measures are available on the department's website at www.fehd.gov.hk.

     The FEHD reminded members of the public to carry out effective prevention and control measures against mosquitoes early because mosquitoes breed quickly in the hot and rainy summer weather.

     A spokesman for the FEHD said, "Effective mosquito control requires the sustained effort of all parties concerned. The FEHD and relevant government departments will continue to intensify their mosquito prevention and control work covering areas under their purview and strengthen publicity and education. The FEHD is conducting a three-phase Anti-mosquito Campaign this year. The second phase of the territory-wide campaign, lasting nine weeks, was launched in April and has just ended on June 17. During the period, the district offices of the FEHD targeted areas that had drawn particular concern to remove accumulated water and to carry out mosquito prevention and control work. After the second phase of the campaign, the FEHD will conduct territory-wide thematic mosquito prevention and control special operations, such as strengthening mosquito control measures at individual construction sites, for three weeks starting from June 27. In the meantime, to further enhance the effectiveness of mosquito control, the FEHD and relevant government departments are launching the All-out Anti-mosquito Operations to focus on eliminating potential breeding places of mosquitoes. The FEHD has called on property management bodies to arrange necessary repairs to their premises so that the chance of mosquito larvae hatching is reduced, and has conducted intense adult control by ultra-low volume fogging operations on a regular basis."

     The FEHD appeals to members of the public to work together to carry out mosquito prevention and control measures early, including inspecting their homes and surroundings to remove potential breeding grounds, changing the water in vases and scrubbing the inner surfaces, removing the water in saucers under potted plants at least once a week, properly disposing of containers such as soft drink cans and lunch boxes, and drilling large holes in unused tyres. The FEHD also advises members of the public and estate management bodies to keep drains free of blockage and level all defective ground surfaces to prevent the accumulation of water. They should also scrub all drains and surface sewers with an alkaline detergent at least once a week to remove any mosquito eggs.

     Aedes albopictus is a kind of mosquito that can transmit dengue fever (DF) as well as Zika virus infection. DF is commonly found in tropical and subtropical regions of the world, and has become endemic in many countries in Southeast Asia. The dengue activity in neighbouring areas has remained high and Hong Kong has recorded one imported DF case so far this year. Furthermore, as Hong Kong's hot and rainy summer is conducive to the proliferation of mosquitoes, members of the public should stay vigilant and continue to carry out effective mosquito prevention and control measures.
Ends/Monday, June 27, 2022
Issued at HKT 17:00
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