Mosquitoes can transmit diseases that can make both humans and their pets sick. The best way to prevent mosquito-borne disease is to avoid mosquito bites in the first place, whether you’re at home or traveling. Because mosquitoes are active year-round in Florida, it’s important to protect yourself anytime you are spending time outdoors. Common mosquito-borne diseases that are found in Florida include: chagas disease, chikungunya fever, dengue fever, Eastern equine encephalitis, malaria, St. Louis encephalitis, Rift Valley fever, West Nile virus, and yellow fever virus. Protect yourself and your family from mosquito-borne disease with these mosquito bite prevention tips.
Mosquitoes lay eggs in water and they only need a small amount to do so. They will lay eggs in water that’s collected in trashcans, gutters, pool covers, coolers, toys, flower pots, or anything else that can hold sprinkler or rainwater. If you notice water collecting on things after a rainstorm or your sprinklers run, dump it immediately and move or turn the items so they don’t continue to collect water in the future. Empty birdbaths and pet water bowls 1 to 2 times per week. Use tarps or covers on boats and cars that don’t collect water. Get rid of any old tires, pots and pans, broken appliances, or other items that aren’t being used. Maintain your pool with appropriate chemicals and empty plastic kiddie pools when they’re not being used.
Cover Up Outdoors
Mosquitoes are most active at dawn and dusk, If you have to spend time outdoors during peak mosquito time, wear closed toe shoes, socks, long pants, and long sleeves. Make sure to apply an insect repellent to both your bare skin and your clothing. The most effective mosquito repellents contain DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, para-menthane-diol, or IR3535. Protect any children under the age of 2 with netting. If possible, try to schedule your outdoor activities around peak mosquito times.
Repair Your Home
Inspect the exterior of your home and identify any areas where mosquitoes might be getting inside. Caulk or repair cracks and crevices you find. Repair or replace any damaged window or door screens. Use weatherstripping around your doors and windows. Keep your yard mowed and your shrubs trimmed. Use air conditioning when possible to allow doors and windows to remain closed.
Mosquito season runs year-round in the state of Florida due to its warm and humid climate. If you need help keeping mosquitoes under control at your home, contact your local pest control company for an evaluation and mosquito control plan.