Valuable information regarding mosquito protection

Mosquitoes are the deadliest animals in the world today because of the diseases they spread according to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). There are 176 species of mosquitoes identified in the U.S. Each year an estimated 390 million people world-wide are infected. Some infected people will get mild symptoms (fever, rash, joint pain or red eyes) for up to a week, but most people won’t know they are infected.

Some of the mosquito-vectored diseases are malaria, chickungunya, dog heart worm, dengue, yellow fever, several forms of encephalitis, West Nile virus and most recently the Zika Virus.

The Zika Virus is spread by only two known species of mosquitoes; Aedes Aegypti, commonly called yellow fever mosquito or the Aedes Albopictus, the Asian tiger mosquito. Both are daytime flyers.

Of the two, male and female, it is the female that has to have a blood meal to lay eggs and reproduce. She can live up to 30 days and if infected with the Zika Virus she can spread it to multiple hosts. There are no known vaccines or medicines for Zika and it is believed to cause microcephaly, a serious birth defect. There have been cases of infected people in Puerto Rico and The Palm Beach Post has reported 84 confirmed Zika cases. Forecasters expect it to spread to other southern states.

What can you do to prevent being infected?

Wear long sleeve shirts and pants. Use EPA registered insect repellent that contains Deet, Picarion, IR3535 and some oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol products. Stay indoors and install screens around your patios. Check your yard weekly for standing water in pots, tires, buckets, toys or trash containers outside your home and if your neighbor is away, get permission to check their yard as well. Water fountains should be drained if not in use. Pools should also be monitored. All these possible breeding sights will be heightened during our monsoon season.

There are chemical treatments as well. Vegetation can be fogged around your home where adult mosquitoes like to hang out during the daytime. Larvacides can be placed in drains, catch water basins, water fountains, pools and grass yards that are safe to be used around people. You could also install bat boxes around your property. One bat will eat 1000 mosquito-size insects per hour.

Rick’s Pest Control is able to assist you in preventing infection of this new virus.

We can be reached at [email protected] or 520-399-9005.