By Jonathan Shkurko and Tom Cleaver

Municipal health service officers are carrying out anti-mosquito spraying in Larnaca after continuous sightings of the Aedes aegypti, known as the yellow fever mosquito.

This particular mosquito can spread dengue fever, chikungunya, Zika fever, Mayaro and yellow fever viruses, and other disease agents. It can be recognised by black and white markings on its legs and a marking in the form of a lyre on the upper surface of its thorax.

According to a statement released by the Larnaca municipality, recent spraying covered areas including Alykes at Spyros Beach, the old airport, Hala Tekke, Faneromeni Avenue, the old Shooting Range, as well as areas in Vergina and the industrial zone.

Health service officers are also spraying urban areas such as rainwater grates, open channels, inactive pools, and construction sites, often featuring stagnant water.

Additionally, health ministry officials are also going door-to-door in various areas of the town to inform people about the risks posed by the mosquitos and the way to minimise them.

“The Larnaca municipality urges residents to drain any accumulated water in their homes or surroundings following recent rains,” a municipality statement said, adding that mosquitoes can breed in very little amounts of water and affect entire areas upon hatching.

Meanwhile, in Paphos, efforts are also being made to exterminate mosquitoes and rid the municipality of weeds.

Paphos municipality’s head of health affairs Christos Christou said teams from his municipality are traversing the town and spraying areas of stagnant water.

He added that teams are also going from house to house, as new species of mosquito which lay their eggs in residential areas have also been identified in Paphos this year.

While visiting people’s houses, he said, the teams are informing local residents about mosquitoes’ life cycle and the measures people can take to combat the growth in the mosquito population.

On the matter of weeds, he said that rainfall during the spring has allowed weeds to sprout in various open spaces in Paphos, and that in response, a cleaning campaign was started much earlier than usual.

This was done with the aid of machinery donated by a private citizen, with the aim of avoiding the outbreak of fires in dried up weeds during the summer.

So far, Christou said, around 20 per cent of the targeted areas in Paphos have been cleared, and weeding campaigns are ongoing.