As temperatures rise this week, so will the mosquito population in and around Cache Valley. The unusually wet spring will likely mean more adult mosquitoes in the air this summer compared to last summer, local experts say.
“Residents are really our first line of defense against mosquitoes,” said Rex Davis, Logan’s Head of Forestry and Mosquito Abatement District.
“It takes only a cup of water for thousands of mosquitoes to breed,” said Davis as he encourages residents to once again look around their property and alleviate excess standing water.
Common sources of standing water are bird baths, pet dishes, flower pot drip trays, ponds, tires, rain gutters, wheelbarrows, wading pools, puddles and ditches, and unused swimming pools. Davis stresses the importance of either changing the water in these items frequently or preventing them from collecting water in the first place.
The city has one person solely dedicated to mosquito abatement and he has been very busy the last few weeks.
“With all this (recent) rain, more and more standing water has been accumulating around the city,” according to Davis. “We need to treat every 30 days.”
There are some basic steps Utahns can take to protect against mosquitoes and the diseases they may carry as West Nile Virus season approaches, according to Rebecca Ward, a health educator with the Utah Department of Health’s Bureau of Epidemiology.
“The best thing anybody could do is avoid areas where mosquitoes reside,” Ward told the Associated Press. “But that’s not always possible, especially in the summertime.”
If you do venture outside, Ward recommends making yourself aware of peak mosquito exposure times, wearing a long sleeved shirt, long pants, shoes that cover your feet if possible, and using insect repellent.
The city will begin setting traps and testing this week for West Nile Virus.
West Nile mosquitoes were found in a west Logan mosquito trap last year.
The Logan facility sends all their species to the State Lab to rule out other illnesses like Zika, malaria, or any other carried by the insects.