Standing water a breeding ground for mosquitoes and viruses they transmit

Published: Jul. 14, 2023 at 2:05 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - As the region continues to recover from severe flood damage, there’s still a lot of standing water around, a prime breeding ground for mosquitoes and the illnesses they can transmit.

Mosquito populations are usually dynamic but they thrive in standing water. Sean Diehl, a microbiologist at the University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine says it’s hard to say whether mosquito-borne viruses like West Nile or eastern equine encephalitis will go up.

“I would probably expect numbers to remain steady or possibly a small uptick, although it would be hard to directly attribute that to a particular flood event,” he said.

Other illnesses that can be transmitted in standing water include things like E.coli and giardia as well as some viruses like norovirus that can be made worse by untreated sewage discharges.