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You're probably aware that not every mosquito that bites you will make you sick. In fact, the vast majority of mosquitoes that bite you are not infected with a transmissible disease. Do you know why? It is because it is likely that most of the mosquitoes that bite you are mosquitoes that live in your yard. Mosquitoes that hatch near your home are not born with viruses. They contract them by feeding on the blood of infected humans and animals. Today, we're going to talk about this transference of disease and how you can mitigate the threat.

Patient Zero

Are you aware that most of the mosquito-related diseases that plague the world are not endemic to the continental United States? It's true. We only have a few mosquito-borne diseases with us all the time. That means these viruses will only occur as outbreaks. If you're aware of this, you can reduce your chances of getting one of these viruses by watching the news and keeping track of viruses such as Zika virus, malaria, dengue fever, yellow fever, or chikungunya, when cases appear. It is important, however, to be aware that viruses can spread by asymptomatic carriers—these are people who have no visible symptoms. So, for obvious reasons, watching the news isn't going to provide complete protection.

What Mosquito-Borne Diseases Are Endemic To The United States?

West Nile virus is one of several endemic mosquito-borne diseases that cause encephalitis (swelling of the brain). Other diseases that cause encephalitis have the word in their name, such as St. Louis encephalitis, Eastern and Western equine encephalitis, and La Crosse encephalitis. These can make you very sick and are potentially deadly. You can mitigate this threat by understanding that these viruses pass from animals to mosquitoes. Inside the female mosquito, they go from the gut to the salivary glands and are passed on to humans. If you take steps to reduce animal activity in your yard, you can reduce the threat of mosquito-borne diseases like these, which have a reservoir in U.S. wildlife populations. While not a solution in and of itself, it can be one piece in an effective mosquito control plan.

Pest Maintenance

The battlefield for mosquito-borne diseases is around your home. When animals and mosquitoes come into your yard, they can unwittingly present a threat to you and your family. But you have some control over this.

 

Address moisture issues: If you remove water sources, you will make it difficult for mosquitoes to develop in your yard. One female can lay a hundred eggs at a time and she only needs a half-inch of water. Address conditions, such as clogged gutters, to prevent puddles and standing water.

 

Remove containers: If you routinely check your yard for containers and remove them or empty them, you can prevent mosquito development. It takes more than a week for a mosquito to go from egg to adult. At any time, you can disrupt that development by pouring water out onto the ground.

 

Manage wildlife activity: When you remove standing water and containers, not only will you make it difficult for mosquitoes to reproduce, but you will also remove one incentive animals have to be on your property. Also, consider removing food options, and install fencing to prevent animals from finding harborage near your home.

 

If you take steps to reduce mosquito reproduction, it can have a big impact because mosquitoes don't travel from yard to yard looking for someone to bite. Most mosquitoes won't travel more than a few hundred feet from where they hatch.

 

If you take steps to reduce wildlife activity, you make it more difficult for mosquitoes that come onto your property to become infected. On the top of your list should be rodent control.

Okay. So How Dangerous Are Mosquitoes?

Most mosquitoes that bite you won't make you sick, and there are ways to reduce the risk of bites and disease. It is also important to understand that you can become infected with a mosquito-borne disease and have no symptoms. But there is a threat that exists, and it is wise to be aware of it.

  • Hundreds of people die from mosquito-borne diseases in the United States every year. While statistically low compared to the hundreds of thousands who die worldwide, there is still a risk.

  • General sickness caused by mosquitoes is more common than you might think. If you get sick with the flu or the common cold, there is a possibility that it is a mosquito-borne disease. Be aware of this. Recurring sickness might be avoidable with mosquito control for your yard.

Mosquito Control In Fort Worth

There is no better way to prevent mosquito bites and mitigate the threat of mosquito-borne diseases than to invest in seasonal mosquito control. Reach out to All-Safe Pest & Termite to learn how routine treatments can significantly reduce mosquito activity around your Fort Worth home. While you shouldn't fear mosquitoes, it is best to do what you can to avoid bites.

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