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August's monthly gravidtrap index for Aedes albopictus drops further
     The Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) today (September 29) announced that the monthly gravidtrap index for Aedes albopictus in August dropped further to 6.3 per cent from 9.7 per cent in July and was at Level 2, indicating that the distribution of Aedes albopictus in the areas surveyed was fairly extensive but still maintained at a relatively low level. 

     Among the 64 survey areas, there was only one area (Kai Tak North) with the area gravidtrap index (AGI) exceeding the alert level of 20 per cent. The gravidtraps in the district concerned were mostly located in the vicinity of public residential areas, schools, recreational and sports facilities and public places. The FEHD has collaborated with relevant government departments, including the Housing Department, the Education Bureau and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, to take action to strengthen mosquito prevention and control work in the areas concerned. The AGI in the district concerned in September has dropped to a lower level at 12.7 per cent. 

     Moreover, the monthly density index for Aedes albopictus in August was 1.1, which represented that an average of 1.1 Aedes albopictus adults were found in the Aedes-positive gravidtraps, indicating that the number of adult Aedes albopictus was not high in the survey areas. 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.

     A spokesman for the FEHD said, "Under the concerted efforts and collaboration of various government departments, the index in August dropped further. The FEHD will continue to monitor the mosquito infestation in all districts, and will conduct prompt and effective mosquito prevention and control work."

     The spokesman continued, "The FEHD is conducting a three-phase Anti-mosquito Campaign this year. The third phase of the territory-wide campaign was launched on August 8 and will run until October 28. During the period, the district offices of the FEHD will target areas that have drawn particular concern to remove accumulated water and to carry out mosquito prevention and control work."

     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 their 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 11 imported DF cases 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/Thursday, September 29, 2022
Issued at HKT 17:00
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