Mosquitoes are small annoyances for most people. One mosquito bite is not much cause for alarm. Most people will not get a life-threatening disease if a mosquito bites them in their backyard. Even if most people don't get sick from one bite, mosquitoes are still dangerous. Mosquitoes infect thousands of people every year, and the danger of mosquito-borne illnesses is growing. Climate change and urbanization are helping to increase mosquito populations. By 2050, mosquito-borne diseases could threaten half the world's population.
Information about Mosquito Control Programs
Mosquito control is critical in disease prevention, especially in areas burdened by mosquitoes. In the United States, local and state governments put in place mosquito control programs to prevent outbreaks. Many governments must work with small budgets and limited time frames. Communities with small budgets may cut corners, which could be a costly mistake. Here are the steps for effective mosquito control:
Surveillance is a critical step in mosquito control. Professionals study mosquito populations to determine the species of local mosquitoes, locate egg habitats, and detect insecticide resistance. Surveillance data serves as the foundation for mosquito control programs. Without surveillance information, professionals could waste time and money.
Remove Egg Habitats
After surveillance, mosquito control professionals will remove places where mosquitoes lay eggs. Mosquitoes lay eggs in puddles, standing water, and marshy areas. Mosquito control professionals will dump standing water, clean roadside trash, and maintain parks to destroy egg habitats.
When mosquito eggs hatch, they become larvae. Mosquito control professionals will dump standing water to control larvae. Some standing water, such as fountains or septic tanks, cannot be drained. In those situations, mosquito control professionals will treat water with larvicides.
Control Adult Mosquitoes
Adult mosquitoes spread diseases that make people sick. To prevent illness, professionals will use adulticides to kill mosquitoes. Professionals also use airplanes, trucks, or backpack sprayers to treat large areas.
Budgets and time constraints limit mosquito control programs. Here are some ideas to streamline mosquito control programs:
• Teach the public about the dangers of mosquitoes.
• Encourage homeowners to empty and clean objects that hold standing water.
• Use a backpack mist blower to spray large areas and dense foliage.
STAY TUNED! Next week we will talk about what YOU personally can do to control mosquitoes.