Miami Beach Botanical Garden temporarily closes due to Zika

MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Miami Beach’s beloved botanical garden will be closed for at least three days as officials inspect and treat the area for mosquitoes that may be carrying the Zika virus.

According to the City of Miami Beach, as they work to preserve the garden, they want to make protecting visitors their priority.

Therefore, in order to give the city and Miami-Dade County an opportunity to properly inspect and treat for mosquitoes that may be carrying the Zika virus, the garden will close for the next two to three days.

A statement issued Monday said, “The City of Miami Beach takes the issue of Zika very seriously and will do everything we need to ensure the safety and wellness of all that live work and play in our tropical paradise.”

So far, a total of 29 locally transmitted cases of the Zika virus have been discovered, according to the CDC.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott announced the latest Zika zone, a 1.5 square mile area in Miami Beach, on Aug. 19. The first U.S. hot zone for locally transmitted cases of Zika was identified in the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami, in late July.

The mosquito-borne illness is especially dangerous for pregnant women and has been linked to serious birth defects. The CDC has issued a travel advisory for pregnant women to avoid the Zika hot Zones in Miami-Dade County.

In order to boost business in Wynwood, the City of Miami began offering free two hour parking in the area. The free parking will remain in effect until Aug. 31.

If a mosquito carrying Zika does bite, it can take up to two weeks to cause symptoms like:

  • fever
  • headache
  • skin rash
  • joint pain
  • conjunctivitis, which causes red, irritated eyes

The State Surgeon General has activated a 24-hour Zika hotline in Florida to answer questions and concerns. That number is 855-622-6735.

Pregnant women can receive a free test at the Health District Center, located at 1350 NW 14th St in Miami. For more information, call (305)-324-2400.

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