NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal is urging residents to protect themselves against mosquitoes and tick-borne illnesses.
So far, no mosquitoes have tested positive for the EEE virus this season. Environmental officials do warn though — this victory will be short-lived. Researchers at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station (CAES) say the virus is likely to hit our state at some point this summer.
In 2019, EEE became a serious issue in Connecticut. Tests showed higher than normal levels of infected mosquitoes. Four people were diagnosed with the virus; three of those people died.
Some of the EEE symptoms include high fever, fatigue, muscle aches, and confusion. Symptoms usually occur 3 to 10 days after an infected mosquito bites a person. There is no cure or vaccine for EEE.
Officials are expanding the state’s trapping program in Eastern Connecticut to try and detect EEE as early as possible.
Another main focus is ticks and the diseases they carry, including Lyme Disease. You want to pay close attention, especially when spending time in wooded areas such as Sleeping Giant.
Senator Blumenthal said, “When you go into the woods, when you play in the grass, when your outdoors in the bushes, whether is gardening or simply taking a hike, protect yourself. Inspect yourself. Wear the right garments so you are covered.”
However, it’s important to mention ticks are here in Connecticut year-round, especially Lone Star ticks- those do survive winter months.
“This tick is not going anywhere. It has made home and it feels comfortable,” Dr. Goudarz Molaei, Research Scientist.
So it’s important you keep your bug spray handy and make sure after spending time in tall grass or brush filled areas, you do that tick check.