MIAMI —Today is the first full day of summer. This means more outdoor time spent at picnics, barbecues, and at parks. It also means more annoying mosquitoes, and the potential for bites and the diseases they may transmit. Miami-Dade County's Mosquito Control and Habitat Management Division is prepared for a long, hot season of abatement activities and requests for services, and offers some helpful hints on how to stay bite-free.
"This is typically the time of year when we experience a surge in the number of mosquitoes we find in our network of traps, as well as in the number of nuisance complaints and inspection requests," says Division Director Dr. William Petrie. "However, rest assured that our capable staff of inspectors, environmental and lab technicians, supervisors, biologists, and support personnel is more than ready."
Mosquito bites are not just annoying. They can potentially spread serious illnesses such as West Nile Virus, dengue, Zika, chikungunya, and yellow fever. For this reason residents should follow this advice in order to avoid them:
- Apply a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-registered mosquito repellent when venturing outdoors
• Discard yard objects no longer in use that can hold water, such as tires, appliances, toys, and pots / planters
• Cover windows, doors, porches patios with screens; keep them in a state of good repair
• Check faucet spigots and air conditioners to ensure they are not pooling water
• Eliminate standing water after rainfall or irrigation to reduce mosquito breeding sources
• Clear out rain gutters periodically to avoid clogs and standing water
• Keep swimming pool pump equipment and water chemicals properly maintained
• Fill tree holes with sand
• Replace the water in outdoor pet dishes and birdbaths at least once a week
• Store water tables and kiddie pools upside down when not in use
• Ensure that boat and car tarps do not collect water
The County monitors more than 300 strategically positioned mosquito traps on a weekly basis, and works with the Florida Department of Health to treat possible and confirmed mosquito-borne disease cases. The division has also recently expanded its regular truck larviciding routes to include high-density areas such as Coral Gables, South Miami, Bal Harbour, Sunny Isles Beach, and more. The full schedule and zone boundary information can be viewed online here.
To request a mosquito inspection of your home or business, call 311, click www.miamidade.gov/311direct or download and use the Miami-Dade County Department of Solid Waste Management mobile app for Android or iPhone.
Learn more about Miami-Dade County’s Mosquito Control program by visiting www.miamidade.gov/mosquito.