Get ready to fight the bite! Heavy rains to bring mosquito influx

Get ready for an influx of Woodland and Floodwater mosquitoes.

SLIDELL-  The Adoue family loves to be outside, but over the past few days, they've been kept from backyard fun because of the soaking from the sky, which has left wet roads and washed out lawns in its wake.

"I'm miserable, they're miserable, we're stuck inside 24/7," said Nicole Adoue.

Another consequence of having all that water in ditches and in yards is that there's going to be an influx to follow of Woodland and Floodwater mosquitoes.

"Oh, I think it's going to be immediately. Usually mosquitoes take about 5-7 days, but I think we already had the larvae so they're just going to be hatching up very quickly," said Viki Taylor, Director of St. Tammany Mosquito Abatement, "We have about 38 species in St. Tammany and so we're afraid we're going to be inundated with quite a few, especially the Floodwater mosquitoes."

But the parish's Mosquito Control is ready. Spray teams have been after larvae since January, due to our warm winter, while a cooler spring has kept counts down and West Nile out of the picture. Last year, the virus had already been found in the parish's mosquito population by May. 

Now, staff will be keeping a close eye on increasing populations and adjusting spray locations and schedules as needed.  So the next step to fight the bite is yours.  Taylor says to unclog your ditches, empty any containers holding water and spray, spray, spray.

The Adoue's are following all of that advice.

"I wait for most of this to dry up and then I'll be able to bring them out," she said, "Then we either handle it with bug spray or we're in before they even come out."

It's a south Louisiana summer staple no one likes, but everyone should prepare for.

As for any Zika concerns, Taylor says Louisiana doesn't see much of the main mosquito blamed for spreading that virus.  So if it shows, she says it will likely still be due to a resident's out-of-country travel.
 

© 2017 WWL-TV


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