Avoid Mosquitoes During 2018 Spring Break

Disease-carrying mosquitoes are seldom found above 6,500 feet

Skiers on mountain

It's that time of year to choose a Spring Break destination. But, this year’s selection has a new criterion: elevation.

Did you know that most infectious disease-carrying Ae. aegypti mosquitoes don’t live above 6,500 feet elevation?

A recent study reported a 1 percent risk to be bitten by mosquitoes above 6,500 feet in the Americas.

Which means…to enjoy Spring Break, ‘go where the mosquitoes aren’t’.

“In higher elevation areas, temperatures are lower, preventing the mosquitoes from invading,” said Peter Armbruster, Ph.D., associate professor of biology at Georgetown University.

Therefore, to safely avoid nasty, disease-carrying mosquitoes, you need to find a vacation destination above 6,500, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

In recent years, growing families and expectant mothers have had to consider avoiding locations impacted with ongoing outbreaks of Dengue, West Nile, Yellow Fever and Zika viruses.

Specifically, the Zika virus is carried by various types of mosquitoes and is linked to microcephaly, a condition where a baby’s brain doesn’t fully develop during pregnancy.

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As a preventive warning, the CDC issued Travel Alert Level 2 notices for most of the Caribbean Islands and South America.

Moreover, both Florida and Texas beaches have been reported as Zika hot-zones.

Which means pregnant women should avoid these locations.

"Traveling through or stopping, even briefly, in a low-elevation area on the way to higher elevation increases the risk of getting Zika from a mosquito,” says the CDC.

Pregnant woman should strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites while in these areas," the CDC said in a new Web page with questions and answers about Zika risk at high elevations.

Which means, for 2018 Spring Break vacations, bathing suits are out, and ski outfits are in style.

Here is a short list of vacation destinations above 6,000 feet, such as:

These resorts are also great summertime vacation spots.  Enjoy Spring Break 2018 and be safe.