San Joaquin County Mosquito and Vector Control District (District) urges mosquito prevention now to reduce the spread of mosquito-borne disease later.
“Since warmer temperatures are forecasted, we are asking that all residents and property owners take responsibility by assessing their property for potential mosquito habitat and eliminate the source. In addition, the District will promptly begin ground and aerial spraying to control mosquito activity when necessary,” said Ed Lucchesi, District Manager.
The District has also planned a response to this season’s flood conditions.
Heavy rain storms and potential flooding can lead to mosquito development, and the potential increase in risk of mosquito-borne disease. With flooded areas and warmer weather conditions, the District is preparing for an earlier than normal mosquito season.
The District is starting surveillance earlier than normal this year, with mosquito traps and onsite inspections of potential mosquito sources.
The public will be able to see the District’s vehicles and technicians in many areas throughout the county. These areas may include along rivers, creeks, and sloughs in both rural and urban areas. From the rains and flooding, the District will be inspecting sites that may include: tire storage facilities, telephone vaults, loading docks, truck scales, storm ponds, industrial areas, flooded farm ground, river seepage, water under homes and buildings, as well as locations storing cannery and produce bins, etc.
This work is being done to reduce mosquito populations and prevent mosquito-borne diseases like West Nile virus, and western equine encephalitis. Early mosquito prevention is key to protecting public health.
Residents can help in the effort as well by taking the following steps: clear debris from drain ditches to allow water flow, cut small ditches to drain water off your property and remove debris from your property. Mosquitoes can develop in less than a tablespoon of water so look for items including tarps, tires, plastic containers, tin cans, jars, buckets, etc.
Remove any standing water from under your home and in your basement, repair broken pipes and sprinklers and clean rain gutters and dump water in items stored outside including kiddie pools, wheelbarrows, bird baths and plant saucers.
Rain barrels need to be properly screened or capped to prevent mosquitoes. They also need to be leak free. Abandoned in-ground swim pools need to be stocked with mosquitofish or drained.
For mosquito related information and mosquitofish: contact the District at 209-982-4675 or 1-800-300-4675 or visit the website www.sjmosquito.org.