ELIMINATING MOSQUITO BREEDING SITE
Who likes being attacked by mosquitoes? No one! Standing water plus heat equals mosquitoes! The most effective way to reduce the number of mosquitoes around homes and neighborhoods is to find and eliminate their breeding sites — standing water. Adults of some mosquito species remain near their breeding site, others can travels far from their breeding site.
Regardless of recent weather patterns — wet, dry, warm, or cool — there are plenty of potential places in which mosquitoes can develop. A neglected bird bath, pet bowl, or clogged rain gutter can produce hundreds of new mosquitoes in a just a few days.
Here are some effective steps that you can take to minimize mosquito breeding around you:
- Screens — Make sure that windows remain closed or are sealed completely by screens at night.
- Dusk and Dawn — Avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are seeking blood, for many species this is during the dusk and dawn hours.
- Dress — Wear clothing that covers skin, made of cotton or any other light materials. Long pants and long sleeved shirts are recommended.
- Repel — Use mosquito repellents or essential oils such as peppermint and citronella oils as alternatives.
Be Alert Of Your Surroundings
- Dispose of old tires, buckets, aluminum cans, plastic sheeting or other refuse that can hold water. Empty accumulated water from trash cans, boats, wheel barrows, pet dishes, and flower pot bottoms. If possible, turn these items over when they are not in use.
- Clean debris from rain gutters and unclog obstructed downspouts. Clogged rain gutters are one of the most overlooked breeding sites for mosquitoes around homes. Remove any standing water on flat roofs or around structures. Repair leaking faucets and air conditioners that produce puddles for several days.
- Fill or drain ditches and swampy areas, and other soil depressions and remove, drain, or fill tree holes and stumps with mortar or sealant to prevent accumulation of water. Eliminate standing water and seepage around animal watering troughs, cisterns, and septic tanks. Be sure that cistern screens are intact and that access covers fit tightly.
- Irrigate lawns and gardens carefully to prevent water from standing for several days.
There are several types of viral encephalitis that can be transmitted by different mosquito species: West Nile Encephalitis, Saint Louis Encephalitis, Eastern Equine Encephalitis, Malaria and Dengue. Symptoms of West Nile virus may include headache, fever, fatigue, dizziness, weakness and confusion. Please contact your physician immediately if you, your child or any family members have any of these symptoms.
At NMSU, Entomology Consultants are contracted to help with the mosquito issues. They come in and take population counts throughout the weeks of our rainy season. When the population reaches a threshold they treat (fog) those areas. They also treat (apply larvacide pellets) to all standing water throughout campus. Thus far they have treated (fogged) the University twice this season.
To report a mosquito problem:
- In campus housing, please submit a Work Order at http://ict-iisweb.nmsu.edu/auxadmin/OnlineForms/HousingServiceRequest.aspx.
- At NMSU (that is not campus housing), please submit a Work Order at https://fms-prod.nmsu.edu/fmax/login.
- If you reside outside NMSU, dial 575-541-2547 within Las Cruces City Limits or 575-526-8150 for Dona Aña County.
Be safe and mosquito free!