A project announced last August has begun in Florida.
Thousands of genetically modified mosquitoes will be released in Florida to help fight a disease-spreading species of the insect. These mosquitoes have been engineered to be ‘”self-limiting” meaning that they’ll breed offspring that can’t survive. This is the first time that genetically engineered mosquitoes have been used in the USA.
This project is being led by a British company called Oxitec with the goal of holding back the population of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, which are known for spread Zika and dengue fever. Previous tests in other countries, like Brazil, have reduced populations of these disease-spreading insects significantly more than using tradition insecticide/ chemical programs.
FUN FACT: Around 12,000 mosquitoes are expected to emerge each week for about 12 weeks.
A controversial project to release genetically modified mosquitoes in the Florida Keys to battle the disease-carrying Aedes aegypti mosquitoes started this week. Boxes filled with eggs, water and food are being placed in the Lower and Middle Keys. https://t.co/RxArRgQVBi
— Miami Herald (@MiamiHerald) April 27, 2021
Recommendations to follow to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites.
• Use bug spray
• Wear long sleeves, long pants, and shoes with socks
• Buy netting, it helps
• Stay indoors at dusk and after dark
• Make sure to inspect your home