News

More to worry about from mozzies than the buzz and itch

It's important to take precautions against mosquito bites to protect against diseases like Barmah Forest virus and Ross River fever.
It's important to take precautions against mosquito bites to protect against diseases like Barmah Forest virus and Ross River fever. Contributed

CLARENCE Valley residents are five to eight times more likely to contract a nasty disease from a mosquito bite than the average for the State.

The North Coast Public Health Unit is reminding residents and visitors to the region to protect themselves against mosquitoes, which are increasing in numbers as summer progresses.

"Mosquito numbers increase in summer and when there is water lying around," said senior environmental health officer Tony Kohlenberg.

"As it is predicted that rainfall will be above average over the next three months, there will be more mosquito breeding sites around and a greater risk of being bitten."

Ross River and Barmah Forest viruses are common on the north coast and are transmitted by infected mosquitoes that breed in flooded, grassy and swampy areas and around waterways.

On average in each year, over the past decade about 500 people living on NSW north coast were diagnosed with either Ross River virus or Barmah Forest virus - in about equal numbers (about 250 cases of each are reported on average each year.)

Compared to the NSW average, people living on north coast are five to eight times more likely to be infected with Barmah Forest virus and three to five times more likely to be infected with Ross River virus.

Simple steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes include:

  •  When outside cover up as much as possible with light-coloured, loose-fitting clothing and covered footwear.
  •  Use an effective repellent on all exposed skin. Re-apply repellent within a few hours, as protection wears off with perspiration. The best mosquito repellents contain Diethyl Toluamide (DEET) or Picaridin.
  •  Light mosquito coils or use vapourising mats indoors. Devices that use light to attract and electrocute insects are not effective.
  •  Cover all windows, doors, vents and other entrances with insect screens.
  •  When camping, use flyscreens on caravans and tents or sleep under mosquito nets.

"Preventing these viruses depends on avoiding mosquito bites, especially in the warmer months of the year when mosquitoes are most active," Mr Kohlenberg said.

Topics:  barmah forest fever, mosquitos, ross river virus



Snapper grom aiming high

TALENTED: Snapper surfrider Pacha Light is representing Australia at next month's World ISA junior titles at the Azore Islands in Portugal.

Surf Scene: Pacha Light on her way to the worlds

Students sleeping rough for homeless

SCU Gold Coast chaplain Kate Morris, Masters of Social Work student Angie Walker and YHAF CEO John Lee.

Students sleeping rough for a cause

Latest deals and offers

Johnny Depp 'deeply respects' Amber Heard

Celebrity

Amber Heard gives away $7 million settlement to charity

The true cost of 60 Minutes debacle revealed

It's a bill that would make even a silk tied barrister blush

Kirk Douglas is defiant, fierce and still standing

VETERAN ACTOR: Kirk Douglas has had a long and varied career.

Kirk Douglas has out-lived almost all his contemporaries

The Hard Word reviews Kyzer Soze

Kyzer Soze are playing Brisbane tomorrow at the Crowbar in Fortitude Valley. Photo Contributed

Kyzer Soze summon the evil for this mighty slab of death metal

Britney Spears 'almost drowned' in Hawaii

Britney Spears has revealed she 'almost drowned' while on holiday

Doco reveals real story behind Black Hawk Down

Former Black Hawk pilot Mike Durant shares his story, which helped to inspire the movie Black Hawk Down, in the TV series No Man Left Behind.

FORMER pilot recounts ordeal which inspired a Hollywood movie.

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m

Guess which Sunshine Coast suburb cracked the million dollar list?

This four-bedroom home at 26 McAnally Dr, Sunshine Beach was for sale for $7 million.

List of Australia's five most-expensive suburbs

Does it get any better than this? Check out this $2M home

LUXURY LIVING: The Coral Cove home built by Steve Coates Constructions that took out the best home over $2 million and the Wide Bay Burnett House of the Year at the Master Builders Wide Bay Burnett Housing and Construction Awards.

Wide Bay's best home is right on our doorstep