Mossies out early

Mosquitoes in the Cayman Islands
have started their assault early this year.

Director of Mosquito Research and
Control, Bill Petrie said he agreed that the mosquito problem, which has also
affecting the Sister Islands, was “quite bad”, but noted that the explanation
was simple and natural.

“We had about three to four inches
of rain between 16 April and 19 April, which is a very rare occurrence [for
that time of year], though it can happen,” he said. “The mosquitoes usually
come out roughly five to seven days after the rain and this is the reason they
are now becoming a nuisance.”

Mr. Petrie said there were no pre-emptive
pellets laid to stop this particular onslaught because that activity does not
usually start until May, just before the beginning of the rainy season.

“We are getting the situation under
control now,” said Mr.. Petrie.

He noted that the mosquito plane
had been out making regular runs, as well as the spraying truck and gave every
assurance that the recent mosquito flare-up was not due to any lack of resources.

“We are fully stocked and have
plenty of resources to fight this problem and one good thing we have learnt in
combating this particular situation, is how effective the pellets really are.”

According to Dr. Petrie however, it
is unclear how this exercise will affect the acquisition of future resources.

The flare-up of mosquitoes now may
also mean that they have a head start laying eggs before the rainy season,
which could in turn, cause this mosquito season to be particularly busy one,
according to Dr. Petrie.

He added that the Mosquito Research
Control Unit had already been receiving calls from individuals who had called
previously to express concerns, saying they had noted a difference after the department’s
current campaign.