A “PLAGUE of hungry mosquitoes” are set to invade Britain next week, experts have warned.
Recent downpours combined with hot weather are making ideal breeding conditions for the bloodthirsty insects.
1 Experts have warned of a ‘plague of hungry mosquitoes’ set to cause misery for Brits over the coming weeksCredit: Getty – Contributor
The warm spell that the UK basked in around Easter is blamed for allowing the pesky bugs to come out of hibernation early to breed.
Bite prevention expert, Howard Carter, warns there will be a “plague of hungry mosquitoes across the UK from July onwards.”
He explained: “The prolonged period of rain we’ve just experienced followed by hot temperatures have been exacerbating the situation dramatically.
“When it was warmer, earlier in the year, mosquitoes were able to come out of hibernation to breed – we’re now experiencing a feeding frenzy.
“And people who have never been bitten before are getting bitten now primarily because of all the additional extra insects around.
“I didn’t imagine things could get much worse but it now looks like there’s going to be a plague of mosquitoes in the UK this summer.”Bug surge
The surge in pesky bugs is largely thanks to the damp and humid weather conditions over the last few weeks across most of the UK.
Dr James Logan, from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said: “When you get wet and warm weather you get better conditions for them to breed in.
“They lay their eggs in water sources – like puddles, water features, bird baths – these are all havens for mosquitoes.
“If people are getting bitten in their garden, they should have look to see where there might be any possible things to get rid of.
“Blocked guttering on the roof, drains, water baths for birds, water butts, water features, ponds.
“If you have fish that keeps them down a bit, but it could be as much as an upturned water bottle top.”
It comes amid fears that Zika-carrying Asian tiger mosquitoes, native to South East Asia, could spread to Europe this summer.
Dr Logan said: “The Asian tiger mosquito has been found in the UK over the last couple of years in small numbers.
“We don’t think they’re established here, they’re not breeding here – but this weather means there is a higher chance of them surviving.”
He explained that it’s possible for other species to become residents in the UK through travel – either in the back of a car, truck or plane.
Dr Logan added: “We can’t rule out the UK being at risk of an outbreak.
“We do get people coming back from abroad with new diseases, like malaria, and we do have species that can transmit it.
“There are parts of the UK, where if all the conditions were correct, then it could happen here.”
Best way to beat mozzie bitesAre you one of those people who, no matter what you do, are the equivalent of mozzie food?
Well your first step is prevention – and insect repellants are key.
The incognito insect repellent range provides protection against mosquitoes and other biting insects, anywhere in the world. They are made from 100% natural ingredients and are parabens, SLS & DEET free.
The range includes suncream, hair & bodywash, moisturiser, spray, roll-on and much more.
Bite prevention expert, Howard Carter, who is also the company’s MD, said: “Many people are experiencing more bites because they are making themselves more attractive (or irresistible) by drinking alcohol whilst washing with ordinary scented toiletries.
“Over the counter personal washing products nearly always attract mosquitoes and other biting insects.
“Therefore, using a citrusy or repellent Hair and Body wash or soap is important, to lower your attractiveness to insects, otherwise you’re counteracting the positive effects of your insect repellent.”
Perhaps it’s too late and you’ve already been gnawed on. Well, don’t pick it – make sure you treat it with a bite cream.
Anthisan Bite and Sting Cream can provide symptomatic relief of skin irritation caused by insect stings, insect bites and nettle stings.
It contains the active ingredient mepyramine maleate (2%), a topical antihistamine which stops the histamine affecting your body’s cells by blocking histamine receptors on cells, preventing the inflammatory cascade and so reducing swelling and inflammation.
Anthisan Bite and Sting Cream (20g) retails at £3.66 and is available from leading pharmacies and supermarkets.
Mosquitoes aren’t known to carry any harmful diseases in the UK — but still leave annoying itchy sores.
The best way to prevent bites is to sue a good insect repellent.
Dr Logan recommends choosing one that contains DEET, PMD or picaridin, and avoiding anything that doesn’t have a label.
He added: “Be as careful as you can be. You’re going to get one or two bites occasionally. The key is to prevent that, wear long sleeves.
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“If you do get bitten, don’t scratch it, as it can become infected.
“There are products which you can buy that can alleviate the symptoms of bites.
“People have home remedies which I wouldn’t recommend – simply get the advice from the pharmacist.”
Climate change is causing temperatures to rise, allowing mosquitoes, ticks and fleas to move into new areas, bringing diseases with them?
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