The migration of the West Nile virus to Orange County over the last few years may be cause for concern for some living in Talega. Rest assured, Talega has always taken a proactive approach when it comes to mosquito control. Talega Maintenance Corporation works with the Orange County Mosquito and Vector Control District (OCMVCD) on a regular basis and management meets with their representatives bimonthly.
Preventative measures are employed regularly by Talega. Storm drain retention basins are inspected and are stocked with mosquito fish by the OCMVCD. Landscape contractors inspect V-ditches for debris and clear anything that could cause standing water.
To maintain consistent messaging, Talega takes their direction from the OCMVCD for all communications to residents. The following are tips from the OCMVCD regarding what you can do to help control mosquitos and keep from getting bit:
- Ornamental Ponds – Stock ponds with mosquito fish, which are available free of charge to the public at the OCMVCD office. Add goldfish for looks if desired, but they do little for mosquito control. Avoid spraying with garden insect sprays. Remove leaves and thin out pond lilies. Keep the water level up. Screen the inlet of the re-circulation pump.
- Chlorine kills fish—transfer fish to a glass bowl when cleaning your pond. If a pond is no longer desired, break holes in the bottom and fill it with dirt or sand.
- Concrete or Plastic Swimming Pool – Operate filter and skimmer every day to remove egg rafts and larvae. Provide drainage for filter and pump sumps. Chlorine will NOT kill mosquito larvae. If a pool cover is used, keep it tightly sealed. Remove rainwater from the top of the pool cover. Stock unused or “out-of-order” pools with mosquito fish.
- Boats and Boat Covers – Prevent accumulation of bilge water. Store small boats upside down or cover them to keep out rain and water from sprinklers.
- Other Kinds of Containers – Remove and dispose of all unused containers that will collect rain or water from sprinklers, such as: cans, rain gutters, old tires, lawn and patio drains, jars, buckets, irrigation valve boxes, barrels, tubs, tarps covering outdoor furniture and equipment.
Additional Items to Consider –
• Home gardeners who root plant cuttings in vases, buckets, etc., should change the water every week.
• Rain gutters should be clear of leaves and debris.
• Usable containers should be stored upside down.
Whenever You Are Outdoors –
• Avoid spending time outdoors at dawn or dusk, when mosquitoes are most active.
• Wear loose-fitting and light-colored clothes to protect yourself from mosquito bites.
• Use DEET or Picaridin-based mosquito repellent or Lemon Oil of Eucalyptus, according to label instructions.
More information regarding mosquito control can be found by visiting www.ocvcd.org.