Community

Health dept. to combat mosquito growth, disease

To eliminate mosquito breeding sites and prevent the spread of mosquito-borne diseases, such as West Nile virus, the Westchester County Department of Health will offer free minnows, mosquito dunks and educational materials to residents on four upcoming Mosquito Control Days at the Westchester County Airport, 2 Loop Road in West Harrison.

Health department staff will be available to answer questions and give out “Keep Healthy and Bug Off” brochures, which offer advice on how residents can prevent mosquito bites and eliminate standing water around their homes to keep mosquitoes from breeding—and biting—nearby. Mosquito Control Days are scheduled for:

  • Friday, April 21, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 22, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Friday, May 3, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Saturday, May 4, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Residents with ornamental ponds should add fathead minnows to the water to keep it from becoming a mosquito breeding site. The dunks serve the same purpose in birdbaths, rain barrels and unused pools. Residents who plan to pick up minnows should bring a bucket or pail; minnows will be distributed in watertight plastic bags, and residents should plan to bring them straight home and release them immediately into ponds with at least 8 inches of water.

To eliminate breeding sites, the health department will begin to apply larvicide to catch basins that hold standing water but are clear of debris starting May 8. Larvaciding teams will evaluate all catch basins on county and municipal roads over the next few months and treat as needed.

To help prevent mosquitoes from breeding and biting, residents should eliminate standing water from around their properties, especially after it rains. Large areas of standing water on public property that cannot easily be removed should be reported to the health department at 813-5000.

To learn more about mosquito prevention, visit the health department’s website at westchestergov.com/health, like it on Facebook at facebook.com/wchealthdept or follow it on Twitter @wchealthdept.

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