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Miami-Dade's Mosquito Control Division gets proactive as mosquito season arrives

Officials say new mosquito-borne virus has been discovered

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MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – An unprecedented amount of rain in May has Miami-Dade County's Mosquito Control Division getting proactive thanks to widespread mosquito breeding.

"I believe we have had something like 12 inches of rain in Miami-Dade in May, which I believe is about three to four times the average," Mosquito Control Division Director William Petrie said. 

The Mosquito Control Division held a training seminar Friday for county employees who work in the field. Code enforcement, public works and construction site management were just a few of the folks who got a sit-down seminar on mosquitoes.

"The mosquitoes, which are out at the moment causing a problem, are not from the last rains. They are from the rains two to three weeks ago. So we still have more to come from the rain we had on the weekend," Petrie said. 

The Zika and Chikungunya viruses are still a concern, but officials say four types of Dengue are on their radar, and now there is another mosquito-borne virus that is emerging.

"There is a new virus called Mayaro, which has been discovered," Petrie said. "We know it is in Haiti and the Dominican Republic, and I believe it is in Brazil."

Here are some mosquito season tips:

  • Drain garbage cans, coolers, gutters and toys
  • Discard old tires, drums, bottles, pots and pans 
  • Empty birdbaths and pet bowls. Do this at least once a week.
  • Maintain chemicals in your pool
  • Cover doors and windows with screens and your skin with clothing and repellant.