What about all these mosquitoes?!

There are many reasons people are moving to our beautiful emerald beaches here in South Walton. Along with the beaches, there are many parks, forests, and trails to explore and call home. With many outdoor adventures awaiting, many people are unaware of the pesky ladies waiting for their blood meals: MOSQUITOES! South Walton Mosquito District has been serving the district since 1964. We are a special district devoted to service from Okaloosa County line to Bay County line and South of the bay. 
The mission of South Walton Mosquito Control is to protect South Walton residents and visitors from mosquito-borne diseases and nuisance mosquitoes. When you see us out and about, we are most likely doing one of the following:
• Surveillance: We have 20 mosquito traps in our district that provides samples of population amounts and types of mosquitoes. These numbers help us to determine which areas are needing adulticide treatments.  At some of these sites, there are also sentinel chickens being tested for arbovirus diseases.
• Larviciding: After rain events, our field technicians will be out treating standing water along the roads. There are also known mosquito larvae habitats (known as “source sites”) the techs will visit monthly to reduce mosquito populations.  
• Service request: When residents in our area are having mosquito issues, they can call us at (850)267-2112 or go to our webpage. We send the field technicians to your home to inspect for mosquito larvae habitats and treat any standing water. The tech may also set a mosquito trap  to determine the species and mosquito abundance.
• Source Reductions: South Walton Mosquito Control services 44 ditches that allow standing water to drain from the land to prevent mosquito habitats from forming.
• Adulticide Treatments: Our last resort is Adulticide treatments, but when adult mosquitoes hatch off in large amounts, our spray trucks will be out. Our spray times begin at sundown to protect the local pollinators. The spray trucks will shut off when people are outside; be sure to check the website for notifications.

January-March Low mosquito activity
• Trainings- Preparing for summer
• Sentinel chickens deployed to field

April- June Increasing mosquito activity
• Storm drain treatments
• Yellow fly season begins

July- September High mosquito activity
• Drought-like conditions: mosquitoes lay their eggs in any standing water, leading to spikes in mosquito activity.

October-December Decrease in mosquito activity
• Summer activity clean-up time
• Storm drain treatments 

In South Walton there are around 45 mosquito species seen yearly. The most problematic are Culex Nigripalpus and Culex Quinquefasciatus, which are known to carry West Nile Virus and St. Louis Encephalitis. Another common house mosquito is Aedes Albopictus, which has the potential to carry Dengue, Yellow Fever and more. These mosquitoes are commonly found in yards and around houses. The best way to prevent them in your yard is to Practice the 5 D’s:
• Dump/Drain standing water from containers.
• Dress in light colors and long sleeves
• Deet: (Use mosquito repellent)
• Dawn & Dusk: avoid being outside around dusk and dawn; this is the most active time for mosquitoes to be out.
If you find you are having problems with mosquitoes, feel free to call us at (850)267-2112 or go to our webpage: www.southwaltonmosquitocontrol.org