MIAMI – For the first time in the U.S., mosquitoes trapped in a zone where Zika virus is being actively transmitted have tested positive for the virus.
Three Zika-positive moquitoes were sampled in South Beach, where a 1.5-square mile zone has been designated as an area of active transmission of the virus, The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services confirmed Thursday morning. One of the areas with a positive test is the Miami Beach Botanical Garden.
The announcement of the zone was followed by a travel advisory warning pregnant women to avoid the area, which stretches from Fifth Street north to 28th Street, and from Biscayne Bay east to the Atlantic Ocean.
County and city officials have ramped up mosquito control efforts both in South Beach, the heart of the area’s tourism industry, and Wynwood. Mosquito counts have decreased. But the Beach, a dense urban environment with lots of landscaping that can serve as breeding grounds, presents a challenge for officials.
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