As fall begins, you should use personal protection against mosquitoes and take actions to make sure your property doesn’t become a breeding ground for them.
While mosquitoes are most numerous in the summer, August, September, and October see a higher occurrence of local mosquitoes that might carry the West Nile Virus. The virus usually has no symptoms or causes a flu-like illness, but in rare cases can be deadly.
Forsyth County Department of Public Health’s Vector Control Specialist Ryan Harrison recommends using EPA-approved mosquito repellents like Picaridin or DEET anytime you’re experiencing mosquito bites and anytime you are outside in the evenings or after dark. Pants and long sleeves can also help prevent mosquito bites. This includes when you’re outside in populated areas like downtown.
Mosquitoes need water to hatch their eggs. A large portion of mosquitoes in our community are breeding in standing water that residents have on their property. Harrison says you should dump out any standing water around your home every seven days and after rain. If the water cannot be dumped, it should be treated with a larvicide to kill any mosquito larvae.
“You should make sure you’re looking around your own property for little bits of water,” said Harrison.
This includes bird baths, children’s toys, tires, corrugated pipes, tarps, rain barrels, and clogged gutters. It’s also important to cover and maintain swimming pools that aren’t in use.
Harrison said residents can call Vector Control regarding standing water, mosquito problems, or any mosquito questions at 336-703-3225.