BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – When all of the rain clears out and the flood water recedes it will be prime time for mosquitoes to breed.
But there are things we can do to minimize our exposure and eliminate breeding grounds from around our homes.
When it comes to mosquitoes exterminator Thomas Perrine says… “The best thing is just controlling the habitat. And the habitat starts with standing water. We call it tip and toss.”
Perrine owns “The Mosquito Authority” in Mountain Brook. He says one cup of water left unattended will help breed 20,000 of the insect over a summer. So the first order of business is to get rid of standing water.
“Tip and toss is just walking your property and any water you see sitting there just dump it over because the eggs have to be in water to develop.”
Once the eggs are dealt with, it is time to find the bugs where they spend most of their time. “Mosquitoes are hiding in the shadows throughout the day. So they are in the bark of trees, they are underneath leaves, in ivy.”
Perrine recommends spraying at least once a month to keep mosquitoes from taking over. And no the weekly bug truck doesn’t count.
“So, many people’s back yards is where they do all their living. They’ve got the nice playgrounds and the play sets and the tramp-o-lines and the kids are playing in the hoses so it doesn’t really drift that far back into their backyards to cover them.”
But even if you have your yard taken care of there’s no telling what conditions await on the other side of the fence. So the health department recommends using a bug repellant anyway.
And Jason Howanitz says there’s a wide variety to choose from. “Deet is not the only product, so if you have concerns about deet, there are other products out there that are approved.”
And Howanitz stresses it’s important to read and follow the instruction on the label.
“Whatever repellent you use, make sure you don’t spray it in your face. Rub it on your hands and rub it around the areas around your eyes. Some people think you just spray it all around… it’s not like sun screen.”
And once you’ve had all the fun you can handle don’t forget to clean yourself up.
“It’ll tell you on any type of insect repellant. Make sure you clean off the areas. Take a shower or a bath or if you just applied it to an area you can just wash it off, but you definitely don’t want it to stay on the skin and absorb because it could irritate it.”
For more information on The Mosquito Authority click here.
For more information about mosquito repellent and safety tips click here.