During Mosquito Awareness Week, students across the territory learned about the biting insects — and how to prevent them from breeding and spreading diseases in the community. (Photo: GIS)

Search and destroy.

That was the message environmental health officers delivered to students last week as part of efforts to eradicate mosquito breeding sites in the territory, according to government.

The school visits — which were carried out by the Environmental Health Division’s Vector Control Unit — were part of Mosquito Awareness Week activities.

With the help of students, the officers led hunts for areas with standing water where mosquitoes might breed, according to Deputy Chief Environmental Health Officer Henrietta Alexander.

“The Aedes mosquito is responsible for diseases like Zika, dengue fever and Chikungunya,” she said. “While our message of reducing mosquito breeding and protecting self from mosquito bites remains the same, we felt it was important to employ the children as messengers as we continue our mission to fight the bite.”

More lessons

The educational agenda also included lessons in ensuring that containers are not left face-up, that garbage is disposed of regularly, that drains are checked and cleared, and that containers are scrubbed at the waterline to destroy mosquito eggs.

The students also used microscopes to examine the insects at various stages in their life cycle.

The week wound down with an expo hosted by the BVI Red Cross’s emergency preparedness team on Friday at the Noel Lloyd Positive Action Movement Park.

A ‘big threat’

Mosquito Awareness Week was observed under the theme, “Small Bite, Big Threat.”