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While Cayo normally has relatively few mosquitoes, due to the porous limestone terrain that doesn't allow water to stand in puddles, there was an outbreak of dengue fever in Cayo District in mid-2009, including some cases of the serious dengue hemorrhagic fever. Dengue, which causes flu-like symptoms, and, in more serious cases, death from internal bleeding, is transmitted by the bite of Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes. These species are most active in the early morning and late afternoon. Travelers, especially during the rainy season, should consider using insect repellent with DEET. There is no preventative medicine for dengue.
Health Health standards in the Cayo are high. The water in San Ignacio and Santa Elena comes from a treated municipal system, so it's safe to drink. Resorts in the region have their own safe water systems. There are relatively few mosquitoes or other insects in the Cayo, as the porous limestone terrain means that rain doesn't stand in puddles. However, after a series of heavy rains, or in the Chichibul jungle, you may find mosquitoes are plentiful. A few cases of dengue fever and malaria have been reported in the Cayo, so you may want to slather yourself with repellent that contains DEET.
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