There are simple steps that all residents can take to make their outdoor experiences more enjoyable. Cass County Vector Control encourages all residents to be mindful of their homes and take precautions to minimize encounters with mosquitoes.
Repellents are substances that help prevent mosquitoes from biting people. Repellents are sold as aerosols, creams, solids (sticks) and liquids. Use repellents containing ingredients such as diethyl phthalate, diethyl carbate, N, N-Diethyl-3-Methylbenzamide (DEET), and ethyl hexanediol. For more than 40 years, DEET has been the standard in mosquito repellents. In 2005 the CDC also added Picaridin (KBR 3023) and Oil of lemon eucalyptus [p-menthane 3,8-diol (PMD)], a plant based repellent, to the list of recommended active ingredients.
Permethrin containing repellents (Permanone) are recommended for any use on clothing, bednets and camping gear. Permethrin treated clothing repels and kills ticks, mosquitoes and other arthropods and retains this effect even after repeated laundering. However, permethrin repellents do not offer any protection from mosquitoes when applied to the skin. Protection generally may be expected up to 6 hours following application.
The most effective way to control mosquitoes is to find and eliminate their breeding sites. The following are some steps to prevent mosquito breeding on your property:
• Destroy or dispose of tin cans, buckets, old tires,barrels, cans, unused plastic swimming pools and any other containers that may hold or collect water. Water that has collected in flowerpots, saucers, urns, pet dishes, and the like can ultimately provide breeding sites for mosquitoes.
• Fill or drain any puddles, ditches, and swampy areas and fill tree holes and stumps with mortar. These areas can be treated with the Bti products or methoprene as well.
|• Eliminate any standing water around animal watering troughs. Flush any livestock water troughs at least twice a week.|
• Plastic or canvas tarps used to cover items like boats and pools should be checked regularly. Arrange tarps so they do not collect water
|• Construction sites or do-it-yourself improvements need to be checked and ensure proper backfilling and grading to prevent any drainage problems.
• Irrigate gardens and lawns to prevent standing water for several days.
|• Any ditches that do not flow and hold for a week or longer can produce large numbers of mosquitoes. These areas can be reported to Cass County Vector Control for treatment.|
The list above contains only a few of the many prime mosquito breeding sites. Remember: When in doubt dump it out! Mosquitoes can appear in water just hours after rainfall.