Mosquitoes top the list of summer pest concerns according to research from the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). This summer's mosquito season is no exception due to reports of increased mosquito populations and West Nile Virus (WNV) activity being reported across the country in as early as March.
"Typically, mosquito season ramps up in June and lasts through fall," said Greg Baumann, vice president of technical services and senior scientist for NPMA. "Due to moist weather conditions and the influx of foreclosed homes, we have seen an early start to mosquito season and anticipate increased mosquito populations as temperatures rise."
Health officials are concerned with mosquitoes spreading WNV, a potentially serious illness transmitted through mosquito bites. To date, thirteen cases of WNV activity affecting humans has been reported in 7 states including Arizona, California, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas according to the Center for Disease Control. Human fatalities have yet to be reported. Animal, avian, and mosquito WNV infections have also been reported in more than 10 states.
NPMA offers the following tips for homeowners seeking relief from mosquitoes this summer season:
-- To avoid mosquito nesting and breeding sites, eliminate standing water and other sources of moisture in or around the home in flowerpots, water dishes, birdbaths, swimming pool covers, barrels, and other objects that can collect water.
-- Keep windows and doors properly screened to keep mosquitoes outside.
-- Be alert when outdoors during dawn, dusk, and early evening hours when mosquito-biting activity can peak. Also, avoid areas near water where mosquitoes gather, especially during peak activity.
-- Avoid wearing dark colors and floral prints, loose-fitting garments, open-toe shoes, and sweet-smelling perfumes or colognes.
-- Plan ahead for spending time outdoors and wear mosquito repellant with DEET as well as appropriate apparel such as long pants and long-sleeve shirts.
Source: Medical News Today
NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 5,000 members, was established in 1933 and in 2008 celebrates its 75th anniversary supporting the pest management industry's commitment to the protection of public health, food and property. For more information, visit the National Pest Management Association online.© 2008 National Pest Management Association
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