Now that temperatures are warming up and residents are already reporting mosquito activity in their neighborhoods, the Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services is launching the “Remove, Report and Protect” campaign during the 2018 mosquito season.
According to spokesperson Dr. Anissa Davis, last year was one of the busiest mosquito seasons on record as Aedes mosquitoes were found for the first time in Long Beach, which has the potential to transmit diseases such as heartworm and a parasitic disease that can affect both dogs and cats.
The Long Beach Vector Control Program has since confirmed the presence of Aedes mosquitoes in several different areas in Long Beach.
“In addition to Aedes, we still have the Culex mosquitoes that transmit cases of West Nile Virus in Long Beach each year, which can cause significant illness and in rare cases can be fatal,” said Dr. Davis.
The Health Department campaign emphasizes three main messages for avoiding mosquito-borne diseases this season: remove, report and protect.
To prevent mosquito breeding around the home, residents should:
- Empty any containers filled with water in and around the home.
- Clean and scrub bird baths and pet water bowls at least once a week.
- Dump water from potted plant saucers.
- Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, and drain water from pool covers.
- Limit the watering of lawns and outdoor plants.
Residents are urged to report unusual numbers of day-biting mosquitoes and neglected or green pools by:
- Calling the Long Beach Mosquito Hotline at (562) 570-7907.
- Submitting an online report at www.longbeach.gov/mosquitoes.
- Reporting dead birds to the California Department of Public Health by calling 1(877) WNV-BIRD or online at www.westnile.ca.gov.
Residents should also protect themselves from mosquitoes by:
- Using mosquito repellent such as DEET when outside during all times of the day, which is safe for pregnant women and children over 2 months; always read the label, said officials.
- Making sure to install screens on doors and windows.
The Health Department will conduct a wide range of activities throughout this year’s mosquito season, including community presentations, increased outreach to schools and providers, working to target new populations such as pets, and distributing mosquito kits to residents.
For more information about mosquitoes, to schedule a community presentation about mosquito-borne diseases, and for more details on upcoming activities click here.
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