Updated: Nov 25, 2019
Scratching at your ankles? You're not alone.
The mosquitoes from heck we heard about last year are back.
This blog will tackle how together you, and Sparkleyard Outdoor Maids can help keep your family and community safe, and prevent the possible spread of diseases such as West Nile Virus and dengue through proper yard cleaning, elimination of mosquito breeding grounds, and community outreach.
A Tale of Two (or more) Species
Los Angeles is home to a variety of insects, including a whole bunch of mosquitoes. The typical mosquito in LA is of the Culex variety.. Culex mosquitoes prefer to feast on birds, but do occasionally bite humans. They can be annoying and are known to carry West Nile Virus (WNV), but Culex has proven to be controllable. In 2001 a new, more aggressive and resilient species was discovered in Los Angeles, Aedes albopictus, and its cousins aegypti, and notoscriptus..
Asian Tiger Mosquito (Aedes albopictus)
These mosquitoes can transmit a host of nasty stuff (Zika, dengue, chikungunya , and dog heartworm parasites) and, though no transmitted cases have been reported in LA, there has been an uptick in these illnesses in travelers returning from abroad.
These invasive mosquitoes have proven difficult to eradicate. Typical mosquito vector control practices involve treating and removing breeding grounds such as pools and fountains. Aedes mosquitoes need even less standing water than Culex, capable of breeding in tires, buckets, wet leaves, and even upside-down bottle caps!
Unique Challenges in Eliminating Asian Tiger Mosquitoes
Because of the limited resources Aedes mosquitoes require coupled with their egg's ability to stay dormant for several days, it takes special precautions to eliminate possible breeding grounds.
If you have mosquitoes on your property contact Los Angeles County West Vector & Vector-Borne Disease Control District. They have a map and links to all the public vector control services in LA County, and the Greater Los Angeles area. This is a free service, which Dawn, Sparkleyard Outdoor Maid's owner, has used and swears by--a neighbor's fountain turned out to be the culprit, and mosquito dunks provided by the city solved the problem.
Mosquitoes can breed in even the smallest amounts of standing water. Leaf piles, poor drainage, tops of paint cans and miscellaneous equipment are all possible mosquito breeding grounds, especially Aedes. The Sparkleyard Outdoor Maid crew is always on the lookout for standing water and will remove it and discuss with you how to avoid the problem in the future. Securely covering and cleaning these types of problem areas is a good start. Reducing or removing them entirely is even better!
Sparkleyard Outdoor Maids specializes in cleaning all sorts of outdoor residential environments. Our yard cleaning services and patio cleaning services are ideal accompaniments to vector control solutions from state or professional agencies.
Sparkleyard Outdoor Maids believes in using only natural, biodegradable products whenever possible. If you are concerned about pesticides, the EPA has created this tool to Find the Repellent that is Right for You