The Zika virus has been in the news a lot lately. The virus is spread when a mosquito bites an infected person and then bites another person who is uninfected. Zika can cause serious and debilitating birth defects.
Outbreaks have occurred in Africa, South America, Caribbean islands, Southeast Asia, and Pacific islands. While the Zika virus has not yet been spread by mosquitoes in the United States, hundreds of people have been infected when they traveled to other regions, and the virus has been contracted in some U.S. territories.
The Zika virus is spread by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which is common in Florida, the Gulf Coast, and Hawaii, and has been known to travel farther north. It is also spread by the Aedes albopictus mosquito, which has a range that extends to the northern United States. Public health officials are concerned that the virus could spread to the United States in the future.
Mosquitoes breed in standing water. Females lay hundreds of eggs on the walls of containers that are filled with water. The eggs stick to the walls of the container and can only be removed by scrubbing them off. When the eggs are covered with water, they hatch and become adults within a week.
Gutters can make an excellent breeding ground for mosquitoes. If they become clogged with leaves, pine needles, and twigs, water can get backed up. This standing water can create the perfect place for mosquitoes to lay eggs right next to your home. After the eggs hatch, the mosquitoes can bite people near the house.
Cleaning your gutters can eliminate standing water and let it flow freely away from your house. This can make your gutters a poor location for mosquitoes to breed.
Gutter guards can keep your gutters free of debris. They catch leaves and other objects that are washed toward the gutters and keep them out so that water can flow through the gutters unobstructed. This eliminates clogs and backed up water and discourages mosquitoes from laying eggs in the gutters.
If it has been a while since you cleaned your gutters, they are likely clogged with leaves and other debris. This can allow water to back up and can make the perfect breeding place for mosquitoes. You can reduce the risk of this happening and protect yourself from mosquito-borne illness by having your gutters cleaned. Contact Connecticut Gutter & Exteriors today to schedule a gutter cleaning appointment.