If you’ve seen mosquitos humming around the Mid-South, you’re not alone. The pesky critters are already making their mark.
It may seem too early for mosquitos, but experts said we did not get enough consistent days of below-freezing weather to kill them off.
Mosquitos are not just a nuisance; they can be dangerous too.
“There’s a lot of West Nile, so we are doing everything we can to combat that,” Shelby County Mosquito Control Entomologist, Cheryl Clausel said.
With regards to battling mosquitoes in the Mid-South, Shelby County Mosquito Control is Central Command. 365 days-a-year, researchers are studying the pests’ presence in our area.
“We have 163 sites that we trap and test every week throughout the County,” Clausel explained.
She said their focus is on vector mosquitoes that carry West Nile disease. Last year West Nile Virus killed two people in Shelby County.
“The more urban areas, usually inside the 240 loop, is where we see the most West Nile each year,” she explained.
Clausel said the scientists are testing trapped mosquitos for the virus, so they know which areas to treat.
“Usually towards the end of May is when we will start seeing the positive West Nile samples, so we will go out and spray,” she said.
Spraying only kills the adults. Clausel told you have to go after the larvae to control the problem.
“When they find the larvae, they treat with this granule. It’s a deactivated bacteria. When the mosquitoes eat it, it explodes their gut and kills them,” she explained.
A comparable item is accessible at the store for private use.
Mosquito Control will give you Gambusia, or mosquitofish, for free to put in your ponds or home wellsprings to cut back on mosquitoes.
“That’s the larvae going in. It just shows you up-close, how they attack it, and why it’s important to have them,” explained Health Science Services Administrator, Kasia Smith-Alexander.
The easiest and most efficient way to cut back on the critters? Smith-Alexander said it’s keeping a close watch on standing water on your property.
“When you have the nice plants out, that have the little base to it, you don’t realize water sitting there can breed mosquitoes,” Smith-Alexander explained.
Something as little as this jug top can be a rearing ground for mosquitoes. Dump out any standing water on your property, and you’re less inclined to fight the buzz this spring.
Mosquitoes are pulled in to certain individuals more than others.If you’ve got Type O blood, been drinking beer, or are sweaty – you’re more likely to become a meal.