Suffolk and Portsmouth respond to mosquito invasion

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Mosquitoes are invading parts of Hampton Roads at an unusual rate. Residents of Burbage Grant in North Suffolk and the Churchland section of Portsmouth have been complaining to 10 On Your Side this week.

Portsmouth, Suffolk and the Army Corps of Engineers launched a joint chemical strike from the air and the ground. They are trying to take out as many mosquitoes as possible, particularly before the July 4 holiday weekend.

The culprit is Craney Island, a dredging site managed by the Army Corps of Engineers. It’s the perfect breeding ground for the biting bugs and all the rain we’ve had recently created a baby boom.

The Corps took to the air and sprayed at Craney Island on Wednesday night.

Portsmouth also took to the sky and Suffolk sprayed by truck to increase the chances of taking out as many mosquitoes as possible.

Suffolk’s Superintendent of Mosquito Control Charles Abadam told 10 On Your Side they are surveying and will be back out Friday or Saturday if needed. Suffolk Mosquito Control will also spray again on Friday in Burbage Grant.

Meanwhile, Abadam identified the worst aggressor as the Eastern salt marsh mosquito. This species is very aggressive and can bite through blue jeans, so even with the environmental sprays, it is advised that you spray yourself with DEET or lemon eucalyptus.

The good news, according to mosquito experts, is that the salt marsh mosquito is not a primary carrier of some diseases, so there’s a decreased risk of contracting the West Nile virus, Eastern equine encephalitis or Zika virus.