Reducing the population of mosquitoes is critical and should be carried out all year round ("Fewer cases, but stay vigilant as dengue peak season is here" by the National Environment Agency; Aug 6).
However, utilising the same measures and strategies every year will yield the same results. The NEA should do better each year as it gains experience in this area, and not let nature take its course by saying that the warmer months from June to October usually see a higher transmission of dengue.
Here are my suggestions:
• Make evening inspection calls on houses that are locked in the day.
• Check more on homes that come with attached planters. Litter thrown from a higher floor may end up clogging the drainage hole of the planters without the home occupants' knowledge.
• Release more fish that eat mosquito larvae into rivers and canals.
• Remove river or stream banks that create shallow water. Grass and plants growing along the edge of such water bodies tend to form pockets of stagnant water.
• Set up mosquito traps in forested areas or wetland reserves.
• Identify ponds in private estates for their suitability to trick mosquitoes into laying eggs in them and allowing fish to eat the larvae later.
Chee Chi Weng