Compared to last year at this time, calls for service have increased by over 100 percent. Not only are mosquitoes maturing at an accelerated rate, they are being detected earlier and found in numerous sources.
Each year Vector Control Technicians perform surveillance and mosquito control, as necessary, in over 21,000 sources of mosquito production but are not always aware of problems in individual resident's backyards. District officials are asking for the public's assistance with reducing mosquito production sites on their properties.
"We are encouraging residents to call our District if they are experiencing mosquito problems or suspect an area that may be producing mosquitoes," stated Nizza Sequeira," Public Relations Director for the Marin/Sonoma Mosquito and Vector Control District.
One way District officials hope to reduce mosquito populations from backyard sources will be the early distribution of larvae eating mosquitofish. Mosquitofish are typically available for distribution or stocking by a Technician annually about May 15. This timing is in part due to the biology of the mosquitofish and weather conditions. Given the lack of rain, unseasonably warm weather and an increased number of inquiries from the public regarding the availability of mosquitofish, the fish will be available from the District earlier this year. Mosquitofish will be provided to residents that have water features such as ponds, water troughs and other appropriate contained water features.
Mosquitofish will be available on Friday, April 17, 2015. To obtain mosquitofish, residents may pick them up at the District office (595 Helman Lane, Cotati), submit a request for service online or call 1.800.231.3236.
Residents are encouraged to follow these simple mosquito-proofing tips to eliminate mosquito production:
- Cover rain barrels and other containers with a mosquito-proof screen (fine mesh-1/16 of an inch).
- Check septic tank lids to ensure a tight seal, repair cracks and screen vent pipes using a fine mesh screen (1/16 of an inch).
- Report mosquito problems, neglected swimming pools, or any area that could be producing mosquitoes at www.msmosquito.com or 1.800.231.3236.
- Stock backyard ponds or other permanent water features with mosquitofish.
- Wear mosquito repellent when outdoors at dusk and dawn. Use a repellent containing one of the following active ingredients: DEET, Picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535.
- Residents interested in staying informed about District activities are encouraged to follow MSMVCD on twitter and Facebook.