Biology, Entomology; Zika virus; Flavivirus; RNA Viruses; Viruses; surveillance; occurrence; epidemiology; West Nile virus; Aedes; Culicidae
In 2015 in Brazil, Zika virus showed features of geographic expansion and potentially increased virulence. In 2016, New York State issued emergency regulations after the World Health Organization declared Zika virus a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. In this study, mosquito surveillance was conducted in Westchester County, New York, to identify Zika virus and other arboviruses. Twenty trap sites were used for surveillance of Aedes albopictus mosquitoes, the Zika virus vector. The Westchester County Department of Health performed testing for Zika, West Nile, Eastern equine encephalitis, and other flaviviruses on 369 batches comprising 8,891 mosquitoes. Aedes albopictus mosquitoes were identified in Nassau, Rockland, Suffolk, Westchester, and New York City. Despite the increased capacity for specimen analysis, Zika virus was not detected. This study provides the first evidence of appropriate Zika virus surveillance. However, the results do not allow determination of the potential mechanism of local vector-to-human transmission of Zika virus among Aedes albopictus mosquitoes. This study adds to the evidence regarding the distribution, emergence, and trapping capabilities of potential Zika virus vectors.