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Increased rains mean more mosquitoes: here are tips on preventing the insect's spread

Dan Loarie/ Creative Commons

July has been far wetter than normal in central Oklahoma, providing mosquitoes with an abundance of breeding sites.

“Anything that can retain water, even like the French drains that can be attached to your gutters... can develop mosquitoes,” said Justin Talley, the Entomology and Plant Pathology Department Head at Oklahoma State University.

Some mosquitoes in Oklahoma carry illnesses, including West Nile Virus.

Mosquito control can help prevent further breeding of the insects and transmission of the diseases they may carry.

Emptying out standing water on your property, like that in bird baths, tires or cups left outside, can eliminate larval breeding sites.

For larger areas of water that are harder to drain, chemical treatments of larvicide can effectively disrupt the development of mosquitoes.

The Cleveland County Health Department is offering larvicide for free through the summer at the Health Department in Norman. It recommends people use larvicide in larger wet areas, like ditches, rain barrels or unused swimming pools.

To receive the larvicide, stop by the Health Department’s Norman location at 250 12th Ave. N.E. or call 405-321-4048.

Personal protection can also reduce people’s exposure to mosquitoes through the use of insect repellent and wearing long-sleeved clothing.

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Isabel Nissley was an intern at KOSU during the summer of 2023 through the Scripps Howard Fund nonprofit newsroom program.
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