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Massive Rains Bring Outbreaks of Mosquitoes, Increased Threat of West Nile Virus

Threat of West Nile Virus and Encephalitis rises as massive rains cause outbreaks of mosquitoes.  

Mosquito swarms on the rise due to an overwhelming amount of rainfall during the last few weeks. Large amounts of standing water around homes and communities are attracting these itchy nuisances. Not only are they irritating, mosquitoes’ painful and itchy bites can expose you, your family and your house guests to serious diseases. Two common diseases spread by the mosquito are West Nile Virus and Encephalitis.

West Nile Virus is a potentially serious illness spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. Symptoms may include headache, fever, fatigue, dizziness, weakness, confusion and in severe cases, death. Encephalitis is also commonly spread by mosquito bites. Encephalitis can also caused by mosquito bites and is an irritation and swelling of the brain. Symptoms may include fever, severe headache, confusion, seizures and problems with senses and movement. The best way to avoid the two viruses is to avoid getting mosquito bites.

“The first few stages of a Mosquitoes life occur in standing water and they hatch just 5-14 days after the eggs are laid.” said John Cooksey, Chief Entomologist for McCall Service. “More standing water means an increase in the number of mosquitoes. Unfortunately, more mosquitoes leads to an increase in cases of West Nile Virus and other mosquito-borne diseases.” said Cooksey.

McCall Services, Inc. cares about your health. The following are tips to help prevent mosquito bites and swarms: First, make sure your window and door screens are properly installed so you can keep mosquitoes out of your home. Next check your gutters. Drain and adjust any gutters holding water. Drill holes in tire swings to prevent accumulation of water. Empty rain water barrels, birdbaths, children’s wading pools, playground equipment and any unused tires stored outside weekly, so mosquito eggs don’t have a chance to hatch. “It’s important for people to be vigilant in that they look for those areas and make sure they are drained,” Shireman said. Health departments will conduct surveillance activities, setting mosquito traps and collecting, analyzing and testing mosquitoes for the presence of the West Nile virus, Shireman added.

It is important to be diligent when starting a mosquito remediation program. McCall recommends in addition to eliminating standing water, arrange to treat potential mosquito breeding sites, areas of adult populations and areas of human contact. Services like the McCall Mosquito Control Program are designed to target additional common mosquito breeding sites such as standing water in flower pots, buckets and barrels where mosquitoes lay their eggs and to treat those sites by applying environmentally-safe preventative treatments for mosquito larvae.

Be proactive. Take the first step in keeping your backyard safe and mosquito-free.

 

McCall Service, a family-owned and operated pest control, lawn care and petroleum distribution company, has been serving Florida and Southern Georgia since 1928. McCall takes pride in offering the latest, most eco-friendly pest control solutions to help achieve and maintain a pest free business today.

McCall offers a variety of services for both residential and commercial properties as well as industries throughout Jacksonville, Gainesville and elsewhere in Florida. For more information, visit www.mccallservice.com or call 1-800-342-6948.

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