Mosquito Learning Center
Possibly The Most Dangerous Animal in the World
Mosquitoes are known vectors of some of the world's most deadliest diseases. Malaria, for instance, threatens half of the world's population, especially those with a weakened immune system: children and pregnant women. Malaria kills more than a half million people per year and cripples economies. Here in the Americas while we are not currently at risk for Malaria we do have a battle on our hands of other mosquito-borne illnesses such as Zika, West Nile Virus, various forms of Encephalitis, Chikungunya and more.
Our government monitors mosquito-borne disease outbreaks in order to protect public health. But Americans can do more to avoid the bite of the mosquito.
Inspect & Manage Mosquitoes on Your Property
Controlling mosquitoes on your property is the most effective thing one can do to minimize bites. Mosquitoes breed in stagnant water sources that lay dormant for 7 days. Consider areas where water is allowed to accumulate such as birdbaths, plant trays and pots, recycle bins, bottles, cans, buckets, tires, clogged rain gutters, untreated swimming pools, floor drains, pool deck drains, etc. Other often overlooked areas are drainage fields that continuously hold nutrient rich water.
Aedes mosquitoes, the daytime biting mosquito known to transmit Zika, can develop by the hundreds in a container as small as a bottle cap exposed to a steady source of water and nutrients.
Community and neighbor cooperation is imperative when disease vectoring mosquitoes are a concern because regardless of how well you manage the conducive conditions within your own property boundaries, if the neighbor has a mosquito breeding issue, your property will still be invaded by biting adults.
Contact a certified pest control professional who is authorized by the State to perform vector management. In order to treat your property for mosquitoes correctly, it requires specialized equipment, materials and training.
Use of Mosquito Repellent for Personal Protection
Whenever spending time outdoors the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends the use of an EPA-registered insect repellent with one of the following active ingredients: Picaridin, IR3535 or DEET. Apply in accordance with the label directions to all of your exposed skin, avoiding eyes and lips. Additionally, when traveling in heavily infested areas, wear protective clothing including long pants, long-sleeved shirts, socks above the ankles and even mosquito netting if necessary. You may also protect clothes and shoes with an EPA approved permethrin product labeled for application on clothing. Follow the label directions closely.