Mosquito programs abuzz as summer creeps closer - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Mosquito programs abuzz as summer creeps closer

Eliminate breeding sites before mosquitoes become a problem. (Source: WAFF) Eliminate breeding sites before mosquitoes become a problem. (Source: WAFF)

A mosquito truck spraying a suburban neighborhood is a sight and sound familiar to most suburbanites. 

Brad Gee is the Vector Manager for the city of Athens. 

"Mosquitoes carry a lot of blood borne illnesses like encephalitis and things like that, so we think it's important to protect the public... to keep the mosquito population down," Gee said.

In Athens, he says they follow a strict protocol to do that. 

"We go out and get physical justification with light traps or with land count and if the adult population is high enough we go out and spray an adulticide. But as well as that, we go out and we check for breeding sites." 

MORE: Athens begins mosquito spraying

"So we feel like we're doing our jobs as long as we don't hear of any West Nile, Chikungunya, or any of the viruses that are out because of the mosquitoes," Gee added.

In this part of the South, pretty weather brings several "sure things." Container gardening can be a lot of fun, but if you're not careful, it can also be a haven for mosquitoes, according to Gee. 

"The mosquitoes that we have in Alabama are the container breeders. So you can remove any kind of container that stands water. They can breed in as small as a tablespoon," Gee advised. "You can clean and scrub bird baths once a week. Keep your pets water dishes that are outside...keep those empty and clean with fresh water." 

He says there are other tips to keep your family safe. 

"Keep grass and weeds cut because adults, adult mosquitoes will use that as a hiding places in dense vegetation," Gee says. 

In Athens, crews spray Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.

Listed below are some helpful tips on how to reduce sources of water in your yard which are potential breeding sites.

  • Dispose of old buckets, cans, bottles, or jars.
  • Repair leaky pipes & keep drains and gutters unclogged to eliminate mosquito eggs. Change water and scrub bird baths as well as pet watering dishes.
  • Properly discard unused tires.
  • Turn wheelbarrows, tubs, and wading pools upside down.
  • Keep weeds, vines, and grass trimmed since mosquitoes use these shady areas.
  • Fill tree holes with sand or mortar so that water does not collect in them.
  • Contact a company in your area which fights mosquitoes.
Eliminate breeding sites before mosquitoes become a problem.

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