- Friday 27 February 2015
Sunshine Coast Council has an ongoing proactive control program to monitor and combat mosquitoes but residents also play a major role in reducing the high numbers of little biters.
Community Programs Portfolio Councillor Jenny McKay said residents’ help in tackling mossie numbers was particularly important at this time following the recent high rainfall triggering an increase in mosquitoes of various species around residential properties.
“From cleaning up your yard to emptying water out of old pots, containers and tyres, there’s a number of small things that will make a big difference in reducing the number of breeding sites around your home - your family and neighbourhood will be grateful for it,” she said.
Cr McKay said council’s role is to reduce the risk of mosquito breeding in public areas in order to reduce the potential impacts on local residents as a whole.
“Council’s mosquito program targets the saltmarsh Aedes vigilax mosquito however traditionally the biggest problem after heavy rainfall is the freshwater ’container breeding’ mosquitos found around the home,” she said.
“Council undertakes aerial mosquito larvae treatments throughout the season, with areas targeted from Coolum in the north to Glasshouse Mountains in the south. The ninth treatment of the season was undertaken last Wednesday prior to the extreme weather. Post treatment surveying is also completed to assess efficacy.
“The timing of treatments is based on a number of factors including the survey results, tides and weather. The next treatment for the saltmarsh mosquito is likely to be in mid to late March.
“Mosquito populations usually rise to a peak in late summer but large populations can also occur at any time between September and April if favourable conditions for mosquito breeding occur. Overall, mosquito numbers this season have been slightly below average comparatively.”
Council obtains State Government permits for mosquito treatments and abides by the conditions of the chemicals used.
Mosquito prevention tips
Personal protection of yourself and your property is the best policy for protection against mosquitos. Here are some simple tips to reduce mosquito breeding around your home:
• Check places out of sight where they may be breeding e.g. roof guttering, where shallow pools can collect
• Repair roof guttering and remove leaves & debris regularly
• Remove overhanging vegetation
• Empty pot plant dishes, car tyre and other containers at least once a week
• Place sand around pot plant bases or store the bases for the season
• Keep fish ponds stocked with fish
• Keep swimming pools chlorinated
• Cap cavity brick walls to prevent water pooling
• Drill holes in tyres used for swings and garden surrounds to allow water to drain
• Ensure rainwater tanks are well maintained and that intake and outlet points are screened with mesh of 1 mm or less
• Fit screens to windows and doors.
• These actions will not fix the problem overnight but will have an impact over a week or more.
• When mosquitoes are present, spray dark areas before dusk and after securing screens
• Wear protective clothing outdoors (long pants and sleeves)
• Explore options such as mosquito coils and burners when outdoors
• Use a recommended personal mosquito repellent.