Mosquito season starting early and so are the efforts in the Valley to stop bugs from biting

Thursday, March 16, 2017
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Neighborhoods all over the Valley are being inundated with mosquitos-- and they are hungry.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Neighborhoods all over the Valley are being inundated with mosquitoes-- and they are hungry.

"If you have your house open they will come in, my daughters gotten bit at night, just covered-- I woke up she had 10 bites all over, down her side, on her back," said Niki Ghimenti, Fresno.

Tim Phillips, manager of the Fresno Mosquito and Vector Control District, said all agencies trying to control the bugs are gearing up for major battle.

"We are anticipating the busiest season we've had in years."

The wet winter and warm spring, created perfect breeding conditions for the bugs.

The various mosquito abatement districts are using aerial photography to identify ponds and swimming pools that could harbor the mosquitoes that carry West Nile Virus. They have a court warrant allowing them to enter any property where mosquitos are thought to be present.

Mosquito abatement workers like John Benevides are checking standing water left by broken sprinklers

"What I'm looking is for early stages of mosquitoes-- what they look like is they look like little worms."

Yard fountains are also a concern-- anywhere there's standing water, mosquitoes can breed.

"The saucers under flower pots are becoming a real issue. Backyard drains that drain out to the gutter have become a huge issue for us also," said Phillips.

The biggest threat is coming-- the Aegis Egypti mosquito, which can carry the Zika virus, which is especially dangerous to pregnant women, is expected to show up in June.

"If you travel to the Americas and you come back with fever and joint pain we want you to see your physician. And your physician will determine whether they need to rule out Zika or any of the mosquito borne illnesses," said Joe Prado, Fresno County Department of Public Health.

The key to mosquito control is remove all standing water and use repellent.

"You will be wearing insect repellent every day, in the house and outside of the house that's how bad this mosquito is," said Phillips.

Officials say the mosquitoes that transmit Zika like to bite the ankles and lower legs.

There's a long list of diseases mosquitoes can carry, but the initial symptoms, rash, fever and joint pain are all the same.

If you are bit and feel sick the health department says call your doctor.