For Immediate Release

May 20, 2016; 4:00pm

DPHSS Release No. 2016-040

Mosquito Breeding Sites/Habitat Source Reduction

An effective way to control mosquitoes, which can transmit diseases, is to eliminate their breeding habitats.  All mosquitoes need water to lay their eggs, which can hatch within a week.  The public can take measures to remove standing water where mosquitoes breed.  Look for the following common mosquito breeding sites:

Fountains, Birdbaths, and Water Gardens

  • Replace water at least once a week.  Also, mosquito larvicides are commercially available for use without harming other living things.

    Used Tires

  • Tires are notorious mosquito breeding reservoirs and should be discarded, covered, or stacked in locations where they cannot fill with water.  Drill holes in the bottom to allow water to drain out.

    Flower Pots, Ornamental Plants, Garbage Cans, and Recycling Bins

  • Drain dishes under flowerpots frequently or move them inside.  Plants, like bromeliads, can hold water so drain or flush the plant twice a week.  Cover outdoor trash and recycling cans with tight-fitting lids.

    Faucets and Air Conditioners

  • Condensates and leaks can form puddles so eliminate any standing water.

    Rain Gutters, Spouts, and Non-Potable Rain Catchment Tanks

  • Leaves and other debris can create pools so clean gutters and spouts often.  Mosquito larvicides can be used in rain catchment tanks.

    Animal Watering Troughs and Pet Dishes

  • These should be flushed at least once a week.

    Leaves and Debris

  • Clean up leaves and yard debris from low-lying areas to reduce stagnant pools.

    Plastic and Canvas Tarps

  • Make sure water does not collect in tarps used outdoors.

    Wheelbarrows, Tubs, Wading Pools and Boats

  • These should be stored upside down or under cover when not in use.

    The Department also encourages the public to protect themselves from mosquito bites:

  • Use EPA-registered mosquito repellant containing DEET or permethrin, and apply according to the label instructions, including children and pregnant women; and wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, socks, and shoes.

  • Avoid being outside during times of high mosquito activity, particularly around dawn or dusk.

  • Stay and sleep in rooms with air-conditioning or with window and door screens, and sleep under a mosquito-proof net if air conditioning or screened rooms are not available, or if sleeping outdoors.

  • Zika virus can also be sexually transmitted from an infected male partner.  Male partners who live in or have traveled to an area with Zika should use condoms or do not have sex.


    For further information, please contact the Mosquito Control and Surveillance Program of the Division of Environmental Health at 735-7221.


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