Mosquito control must be a shared responsibility for abatement to be successful. Spending a few moments each week checking outside areas can dramatically reduce mosquito numbers, and the risks associated with the pest. By simply draining flowerpots, watering cans, food bowls or any container that holds water, homeowners can stop the growth cycle. Just remember, the best way to prevent mosquitoes is to dump and drain after the rain.
The county's mosquito control department also asks residents to rake their yards and regularly clean their gutters. While not a pleasant task, moist leaves and organic matter can create the perfect mosquito breeding area.
In addition to being a general pest, citizens should remember mosquitoes can carry disease. Mosquito borne diseases, also known as arboviruses are the main focus of mosquito control in Florida. To help reduce the risk of getting bitten by mosquitoes, residents should follow the Four D's:
DUSK to DAWN - is the timeframe when mosquitoes are most active. Reduce or eliminate outdoor activity between dusk and dawn or take precautions to prevent mosquito bites.
DRAIN - standing water. Water found in old tires, flowerpots, clogged rain gutters, leaky pipes and faucets, birdbaths and wading pools can be breeding sites for mosquitoes.
DRESS - in light colored long sleeves and pants when you are outside, especially in mosquito infested areas.
DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide) - if you are going to be outside when mosquitoes are most active, make sure you apply insect repellant that contains DEET. Read and follow label instructions. Spray both exposed skin and clothing with repellent when outdoors.
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