April 27, 2023 -GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – In order to keep mosquito-borne diseases at bay, Collective Prevention Services (CPS) calls residents to action to eliminate mosquito breeding sites.
Mosquitoes can breed in as little as a half-inch of water. This is not a lot of water, and plant saucers are one of those unassuming places that can gather a small amount and still be a huge breeding site for your backyard mosquito.
Source reduction is the key to decreasing the mosquito population. Due to the tropical nature of our climate, breeding habitats are in abundance, and many of them are unfortunately man-made.
Breeding sites include anywhere that water can settle for a certain time undisturbed from garbage to your flowers/plants. This includes tin cans, old tires, empty paint cans, buckets, old saucers, flowerpots, cemetery urns/vase, old pet dishes, unused plastic swimming pools, boats on dry dock, used food containers, plastic drinking cups; plastic shopping bags or other containers or plants that collect and hold water. Turn over unused boats or make sure the water runoff is free to run on the ground. Your rain spouts and cisterns can also become a breeding site if not managed properly, clean them regularly.
A bite by an infectious Aedes aegypti mosquito, spreads diseases such as – Dengue, Zika, Chikungunya, Yellow Fever -, and therefore it is crucial for every household, and business to prevent its breeding. In addition to eliminating breeding sites, use mosquito repellent to prevent the mosquitoes from feeding.
It is very important to check around your yard and in case of a business- your work environment, to make sure there is no standing water after rainfall.
A few tips/reminders: Get rid of any unused pots or bins or turn them upside down, so they don’t collect water; Keep trash and recycling bins covered. If you can, try drilling drain holes into the bottom of them; keep a fine-mesh screen over rain barrels, water tanks and cisterns.
Take a look at your plants, once your plants are collecting water in between the leaves and the stem, these too pose as a breeding site. Trim plants and tree hedges and keep your property clean, because it also prevents rodents from thriving.
For issues surrounding mosquito breeding sites, contact CPS’ vector control team by calling 542-1222/1570 or 914. Ask to be connected to the vector control team. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org with supporting pictures and contact information to report a mosquito nuisance or request assistance.
Collectively, we need to minimize the mosquito population at its source!