October 23,

Protective Measures at Home

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Protective Measures at Home

Mosquitoes need water to breed. Mosquito eggs left in stagnant water, even small amounts allowed to stand for a week or more, can develop into adult mosquitoes capable of flight. Reducing or eliminating standing water is an effective and economical way to control mosquitoes.  Mosquito-breeding season runs from Mid-May until the end of September, so this is the ideal time to eliminate potential breeding sites. The following are methods for preventing stagnant water and thus mosquito breeding:

  • containers, buckets, pots, barrels, cans, wheel barrows, tires, children’s toys, etc. should be emptied, inverted, punctured, disposed of, or covered;
  • ensuring screens on windows and doors are tight fitting with no holes;
  • eaves troughs should be kept clean to allow proper drainage and to ensure that water does not stand;
  • rain barrels should have a tight fitting screen over the top to keep mosquitoes from breeding;
  • shaded flat roof tops should be properly drained to ensure that standing water is eliminated;
  • plastic covers on lawn chairs and other outdoor equipment should be drained weekly;
  • children’s tire swings should have a hole in the bottom so that water drains out;
  • tires should be stored inside a garage or shed, or disposed of through recycling programs;
  • change water in bird baths at least twice a week;
  • small boats and canoes should be stored upside down, and large boats should be covered to prevent accumulation of water with drains kept open;
  • swimming pools, spas, and hot tubs should be kept chlorinated.  If not in use, they should be kept tightly covered, and rain water should be kept from accumulating on the cover;
  • ornamental ponds should have a pump that will keep water circulating, or fish that will eat mosquito larvae; and
  • lawns and shrubs should be trimmed and maintained as they are a common spot for mosquitoes to rest.

In 2003, the City of Peterborough created bylaw 03-107 to decrease the prevalence of stagnant water that can serve as breeding sites for mosquitoes that have the potential to carry West Nile Virus.  The bylaw states that standing water may not be present on your property for more than four days.  For more information on this bylaw please visit the City of Peterborough website.

Last modified on Jun 29, 2015