Tips to help battle mosquitoes
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Mosquito season has officially arrived in Kentucky.
The Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness (LMPHW) is out treating known breeding grounds, trapping mosquitoes and testing them for various diseases, including West Nile virus, St. Louis Encephalitis virus, La Cosse Encephalitis virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus.
According to LMPHW, every spring and summer, mosquito control treats 14,500 catch basins to deal with mosquito larvae and 8,982 miles of swampy areas and other areas known to collect standing water. They place over 140 mosquito traps around the city and county.
“As we work to combat mosquitoes, we are also urging people to protect themselves from mosquito bites and also help prevent them from breeding,” said Connie Mendel, senior deputy director at LMPHW in a statement. She added, “This is especially important as we head into the Memorial Day holiday weekend, summer festivals, events and vacations where people will be spending much more time outside.”
LMPHW recommends the three D’s to protect you and your family from mosquitoes: Drain, Defend and Dress.
Drain any standing water from gutters, buckets, flowerpots, birdbaths and anything else that collects water regularly.
If you plan to spend time outdoors, be sure to use insect repellants. Those that contain DEET, picaridin, IR3535 and some oil of lemon or eucalyptus provide longer-lasting protection. You should also dress accordingly. Wear long sleeves, long pants, socks and closed toe shoes. If you are outside, you should also avoid perfumes and scented lotions.
“You should take extra precaution during peak mosquito biting hours of early morning and dusk,” Mendel said. “Wear insect repellant and protective clothing or consider avoiding outdoor activities altogether during these times.”
Mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus have been found in Louisville in the past, but none have been detected this year. Once the virus is detected, the city begins mosquito fogging in those areas and the LMPHW lets the public know about the discovery and where fogging will take place.
Here is West Nile case data from previous years:
2022 – 3 human cases, 1 death
2021 – 1 human cases, 0 deaths
2020 – 0 human cases, 0 deaths
2019 – 2 human cases, 1 death
2018 – 5 human cases, 0 deaths
If you have mosquitoes in your neighborhood and want to make a complaint about mosquitos, call Metro Call at 311 or 502-574-5000. To learn more about mosquitoes and ways to prevent mosquito bites, visit the mosquito control and prevention web page.