Heavy rainfall during the year in Mobile County leads to an increase in mosquito activity. The Vector Control Department uses many control efforts to limit mosquito breeding and growth. During the year, ultra low-volumes of insecticides (chemicals that kill mosquitoes) are applied, through truck and aircraft-mounted equipment, in target areas to control adult mosquitoes. Target areas, or areas with an increase in mosquito activity, are selected by surveying or monitoring areas.
Inspectors survey, map, monitor, and treat mosquito breeding sites throughout the year. Typical breeding sites include roadside and drainage ditches, storm drains, swamps, spoils sites, and low areas. Environmentally safe insecticides are applied to breeding sites to kill the immature mosquitoes before they hatch into biting and harmful adults. Adult mosquitoes may be harmful because they can carry diseases.
To report a mosquito problem call, (251) 690-8124.
Do your part to stop the spread of mosquitoes:
- Mosquitoes breed in standing water. Empty water from old tires, cans, jars, buckets, drums, plastic wading pools and other containers.
- Clean clogged roof gutters and repair broken screens.
- Change pet watering dishes daily and rinse bird baths weekly.
Residents should be very careful and try to reduce their exposure to mosquito bites. Since mosquitoes are more active at dusk and again at dawn, limit outdoor activities during these times.
Other precautions residents can take to reduce mosquito annoyance include:
- Use a good mosquito repellant on arms, legs, and other exposed areas (some of the most reliable repellants contain the chemical DEET; repellants with high concentrations of DEET - over 10%, should not be used on children). Follow instructions carefully when using any insect repellent.
- Long sleeves and long pants used with a mosquito repellent helps to limit bites.
- Wear light-colored clothing (dark-colored clothing may help attract unwanted insects).
- Wear a hat or a cap (preferably light-colored).
- Be aware that aromatic (scented) cosmetics may also attract insects.
Mosquito bites can be treated with topical agents such as calamine and menthol lotions. Cortisone creams and oral antihistamines are available as over-the-counter medications that can reduce itching. Bites to children should be watched for secondary infections that might need to be treated by a physician.
Links for additional information on Mosquito Control:
Spray Truck Routes
West Nile Virus Stats
CDC - www.cdc.gov
AL Vector Management Society - www.alabamavms.org