Swat Mosquitoes Before They Bite
Pinellas County officials say mosquito control starts at home. Officials offer tips for all Tampa Bay residents.
PINELLAS COUNTY – As summer rains, high temperatures and humidity become the norm, Pinellas County Mosquito Control technicians are aggressively treating known breeding areas by ground and by air, as well as responding to calls from citizens. But they have a strong message for all residents: Breaking the mosquito cycle starts at home.
Technicians note that many local homes have items or areas that contain standing water – ideal breeding conditions for mosquitoes – contributing to the mosquito problem. Mosquito larvae only need a fraction of an inch of standing water to survive.
Pinellas County Mosquito Control asks residents to do their part to reduce the mosquito population with some simple steps:
- Empty water from flower pots, garbage cans, recycling containers, wheelbarrows, aluminum cans, boat tarps, old tires and buckets; any item that can hold water.
- Flush birdbaths and wading pools weekly.
- Flush ornamental bromeliads or treat with BTI, a biological larvicide available at home stores.
- Clean roof gutters, which can become clogged and hold water.
- Change the water in outdoor pet dishes regularly.
- Keep pools and spas chlorinated and filtered.
- Stock ornamental ponds with mosquito-eating fish.
- Cover rain barrels with screening.
- Check for standing water under houses, near plumbing drains, under air conditioner drip areas, around septic tanks and heat pumps.
- Take steps to eliminate standing water, improve drainage and prevent future puddling.
Mosquito bites can irritate skin and potentially spread disease. Residents can protect themselves from mosquito bites when outdoors by wearing mosquito repellent (products containing DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus) and loose-fitting clothing with long sleeves and pants.
These simple preventive measures can help reduce the number of mosquitoes and minimize mosquito-borne diseases, Pinellas officials say.
“It’s important for residents to remember the three D’s of mosquito prevention,” said Brian Lawton, program coordinator, mosquito control and vegetation management. “Dress wisely; defend with a good mosquito repellent; and drain standing water.”
Pinellas County | Mosquito Control | Mosquito
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