Summer quickly is approaching, which means that mosquito activity soon will become more widespread. Mosquitoes can carry West Nile virus, which can cause mild to serious illness. The best way to prevent WNV is to avoid mosquito bites.
Following the “Five Ds of Prevention” can help lessen the risk of getting bitten by mosquitoes:
• DRAIN all standing water.
• Avoid DAWN and DUSK when mosquitoes are most active.
• DRESS appropriately in long sleeves and pants.
• DEFEND or DEET yourself against mosquitoes with an effective repellent.
• DOORS and windows should be in good condition.
The Liberty County Health Department also urges residents to take appropriate precautions now and throughout the summer to minimize mosquitoes around their property. There are several easy things they can do to reduce mosquito breeding including:
• Removing water-holding containers (buckets, barrels, flower pots, etc. Drill holes in tire swings so water drains out. Keep children’s wading pools empty and on their sides when they’re not being used).
• Changing water frequently in pet dishes
• Changing bird bath water at least twice a week
• Avoiding using saucers under outdoor potted plants
In addition, consider organizing or participating in clean-up activities to pick up garbage from parks and other public spaces. By helping limit potential breeding grounds for mosquitoes, every resident can contribute to reducing the nuisance caused by mosquitoes and stop the transmission of mosquito-borne diseases.
For more information on West Nile virus, go to www.gachd.org and click on West Nile virus link under the Environmental Health tab.