As giant cranes help erect more and more high rises, the Miami cityscape is growing. But along with it, the mosquito population is, too. With the rainy season here, efforts are underway to keep the mosquito population down, but a startling realization that construction growth in Miami-Dade County could be linked to possible mosquito breeding opportunities is a cause for concern.
Disease-spreading mosquitoes can breed in nearly any container that holds water. This can include items around a construction site, such as water-filled Jersey barriers, concrete floors, construction dumpsters, drums, five-gallon buckets, plastic litter, empty cans and bottles, plumbing and duct banks, elevator vaults and the like.
Here are a few ways to reduce mosquitoes at your site:
- Water-filled construction barriers can breed mosquitoes, especially when rainwater enters and settles through cracks or an open drain plug. To prevent breeding habitats, cover and seal barriers properly and apply a commercially available larvicide oil or other larvicide containing Bti (Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis).
- Empty construction dumpsters once per week to help break up the mosquito life cycle and treat dumpsters with Bti.
- Remove unnecessary containers including construction buckets. For containers not in use, turn them upside down or store them where they will not collect rainwater.
- Recycle or discard empty cans, bottles and other food and beverage containers from the construction area.
Residential areas where homes are unfinished or have become abandoned are also breeding grounds. Pools that are not treated will fester with mosquito larvae and are a real health hazard.
If you live next to a foreclosed or abandoned property that has an unmaintained pool, you can contact Miami Dade County to report a mosquito problem by calling 311 or through the 311 Direct App on your smart phone. Inspectors will visit the property within 48 hours and will let you know the results of the inspection if you provide your contact information.
This summer and year-round, Miami-Dade County Mosquito Control will continue to be vigilant and provide pesticide applications by hand to control adult mosquitoes.
Builders and developers throughout our community should do their part to prevent mosquito breeding at their construction sites. And property owners and residents all over Miami-Dade County are reminded to drain standing water around the house from toys, plant pots, garbage cans, pet bowls, etc. Specifically, bromeliads that hold water should be treated with larvicide and any persistent pooling water should be flushed or drained where possible and treated with Bti granules.
Beyond draining, cover doors, windows, porches and patios with screens wherever possible. Repair any damaged or torn screens as quickly as possible. And certainly, protect your skin with repellent and long pants and sleeves to prevent bites if you work at or near a construction site and will be outside for any length of time.
Above content provided by Miami-Dade County.