Fighting the bite

Published 1:38 am Monday, July 28, 2008

By By Kerry Whipple Bean – publisher
With mosquito-borne diseases still a problem in south Alabama, the Escambia County Health Department is using a grant to track any occurrences of eastern equine encephalitis or West Nile disease.
The so-called “sentinel chickens” will help the health department alert the public to be more wary of mosquitoes.
The health department is also offering free larvicide briquets to kill mosquito larvae in standing water. “The best way to control mosquitoes is to kill the larvae before they hatch,” Elliott said.
The health department will also do more education and some mosquito trapping to help control incidents of EEE or West Nile.
So far this year, there have been no cases in Escambia County. A Baldwin County infant was sickened by EEE earlier this month. Last fall, a 6-month-old Gulf Shores boy was killed by EEE.
Health officials recommend taking steps to control the mosquito population - including getting rid of standing water - and to prevent mosquito bites.
The recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control include: