County officials urge residents to check for standing water to avoid mosquito breeding
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — County officials Friday urged San Diegans to spend part of their weekend looking through their yards for standing water that could be breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
Recent rains, coupled with this week’s warm weather, may have invigorated mosquito breeding in the region, according to the county Department of Environmental Health.
"It’s really important for people to look around their properties to find places where water has collected and dump it out to keep mosquitoes from breeding,” said DEH Director Elise Rothschild. "We all have a role in preventing mosquito-borne diseases, whether it’s West Nile virus or Zika.”
Water usable for mosquito breeding could be found in toys left outside, saucers under a flower pots, a discarded cup, rain gutters or garbage cans. The water needs to be dumped to prevent breeding.
Invasive Aedes mosquitoes, which can potentially carry Zika, like to live and breed very close to people, in yards and even inside people’s homes, county officials said.
Under San Diego County’s normal weather conditions, mosquitoes can grow from eggs to buzzing adults in 10 to 12 days, said Chris Conlan, a supervising vector ecologist with the county Vector Control Program. However, when temperatures warm up, that timeline can shrink to five or six days, he said.
Conlan said he’s seen mosquitoes breed in half-inflated basketballs left
out in yards and inside uncapped chain-link fence-posts that have collected
"I’ve seen them fly out of those things in droves,” Conlan said.
The DEH urged residents to report to them if they’re bitten by mosquitoes during daylight hours, or if insects that match the description of Aedes mosquitoes are spotted, by contacting the Vector Control Program at (858) 694-2888.