SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Metropolitan Health District said they are seeing an uptick of mosquitoes due to the recent rain in the city.
“With all the rain that we’ve had, there’s been a lot of stagnant water, which makes a breeding ground for mosquitoes,” Kerzell Ramos, a Metro Health Senior Environmental Health Officer, said.
Mosquitoes are often found in areas likely to collect water and lay their eggs in moist soil or leaf litter, or stagnate water. To better combat mosquitoes, Metro Health has offered a list of safety measures.
Each spring until late fall, Metro Health conducts mosquito surveillance for West Nile disease on public property to better protect San Antonio and its visitors from diseases that often can spread. Mosquitoes are notorious for carrying dangerous diseases like encephalitis and West Nile.
Ramos said at this time, Metro Health has not found any dangerous diseases in its surveillance. He said the surveillance is also looking to find mosquito hotspots across San Antonio, and he’s expecting them to be in parks with rivers or ponds.
“As long as we have water and rain, we’re going to have mosquitoes,” Ramos said.
Here’s a list of recommended safety measures:
- Remove standing water at home in areas such as uncovered boats, open trash bins, fountains, clogged rain gutters, water bowls for pets, and more.
- Wear protective clothing, such as light colored, long-sleeved shirts, pants, and socks to protect exposed skin during dusk and dawn, which is when mosquitoes are most active.
- Avoid the use of perfumes and colognes when working outdoors.
- Use insect repellent with active ingredients such as DEET, Picaridin, or IR3535.
- Mosquito-proof homes by keeping screens on windows and doors closed.
- Use air conditioning when available.
- If working outdoors, use soap and water afterwards to wash skin and clothing that have been treated with insect repellent.
- Improve sanitation – when water is contaminated with organic matter (animal waste, grasses, and leaves), mosquito larvae have a high likelihood of surviving.
Metro Health says individuals should not spray insect repellent under clothing, close to their eyes, mouth, wounds, or cuts. Repellent should also not be used on young infants. Aerosol or pump products should not be sprayed in enclosed areas or on an individual’s face.
For more information, the community can visit the Metro Health website, by clicking here.