We shall already protect ourselves against the Covid-19 epidemic, but now, you should also beware the Aedes albopictus, the famous tiger mosquito reportedly back in France. The vigilance-moustiques website updated the map of France showing the presence of these dangerous mosquitoes, department by department.
And news is not good as the tiger mosquito is spreading across the country. This year, 6 new departments are on red alert, meaning the tiger mosquito is there and active. All in all, 57 departments in France are on red.
Paris and almost all Île-de-France are on red alert
Paris and 6 other departments in Île-de-France are included in the alter: Seine-et-Marne, Yvelines, Essonne, Hauts-de-Seine, Seine-Saint-Denis and Val-de-Marne
Only the Val d’Oise remains on orange alert, which means that the tiger mosquito has been occasionally noticed these past 5 years.
Last but not least, 29 departments are on yellow alert. Departments are subject to “an entomologic watch devoted to surveilling the tiger mosquito”.
As said on Vigilance-Moustiques website, 67 departments are colonized or about to be, which is about 65% of the territory.
For the record, the tiger mosquito can cause serious diseases such as malaria, yellow fever, dengue and chikungunya.
How to recognize tiger mosquitoes?
If you fear being stung by a tiger mosquito, make sure you can recognize it. Vigilance-Moustiques says that the tiger mosquito is “smaller than a 1-cent coin (it is only a few millimeters long), it flies quite slowly and is easy to swat in flight”. It loos rather peculiar “since it is black with white stripes on the legs and the abdomen”.
How to protect ourselves from tiger mosquitoes?
In order to protect ourselves from tiger mosquitoes, the Vigilance-Moustiques website reminds the importance of paying attention to “larval habitat” such as cups under flowerpots, watering cans, old tires, clogged gutters… A piece of advice then, avoid any standing water and think about discarding these small “water reservoirs” and do not forget to renew them at least once a week.
To avoid bites during a stroll, wear clothes to cover your body, including legs and arms, and of a rather clear color as many mosquito species are attracted by dark colors. At home, you can opt for those famous screens and make sure you air right to drive insects away.
You can also use cutaneous repellent recommended by the WHO such as those containing DEET and IR3535 or Icaridine.
It is also possible to make traps such as setting up a screen to cover water reservoir and prevent female mosquitoes from laying their eggs.