December was one of the warmest on record for southwest Florida. For example, Naples was the 3rd warmest on record. While beachgoers maybe loving the warmer temperatures, so are the mosquitos in Collier County.
“With warmer temperatures and an abundance of water, the mosquitoes can lay their eggs and in 5 to 7 days we got buzzing adults,” said Robin King, Director of Communications with the Collier Mosquito Control District.
Warm temperatures are leading prime breading conditions for Mansonia Mosquitoes, especially in the Ava Maria and Immokalee. Luckily, these types of mosquitoes cause little harm to humans, but they can cause heartworm in dogs.
Unlike other species of mosquitoes, Mansonia Mosquitoes are very hard to reach until they fully grown. This is because they latch onto water lettuce in a larva state.
“The mosquitos that are breeding out there are doing so on the roots of water plants,” said King. “It is very difficult to reach them when they are in that larva or juvenile stage, so we can do is knock them when they are fly adults.”
The Collier Mosquito Control District assesses daily to where they were seeing the biggest trouble spots. They then spray these pests from the land and air right at sunset. The key is breaking to life cycle.
“If we can get out there, and in just one night, knock enough adult mosquitos that are in the air, then it is going to interrupt that lifecycle,” said King. “That means that there not going to be as many adults laying eggs in the next day or two.”
Collier Mosquito Control District says that just one acre of water lettuce can produce up to 1.5 million mosquitoes per night. With nearly 50 different species of mosquitoes in Florida, mosquito control is 12 month of year fight.
If you have a mosquito issue in Collier County, you are asked to reach out the mosquito control district. They will be able to locally test those mosquitoes to make sure they are not carrying disease. You can reach them at 239-436-1000.