LAS VEGAS (KXNT) – Residents wanting to stay a step ahead of mosquito season this year and interested in learning about insects are invited to attend a Wetlands Aquatic Insects lecture at Clark County Wetlands Park from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday, February 15.
The presentation will be held in the auditorium of the Nature Center at Clark County Wetlands Park, 7050 Wetlands Lane, 89122. Presenters include Chris Bramley, vector control supervisor in Clark County’s Public Works Department, and Vivek Raman, vector surveillance supervisor of the Southern Nevada Health District. Efforts to monitor and control mosquitoes in the Las Vegas Valley will be discussed. Information also will be provided about other insects found in Wetlands Park, and the role insects play in its ecosystem. Mosquito season normally runs from March to November in Southern Nevada, depending on temperatures. The warmer the temperatures, the sooner the season begins.
Last spring, the Southern Nevada Health District confirmed the first-ever appearance in the Las Vegas Valley of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, potential carriers of the Zika, dengue, chikungunya and other viruses. The Health District reported 2 cases of Zika virus in Clark County residents in 2017 and 22 in 2016. Most were travel related, while one case was sexually transmitted. To date, no mosquitoes in thelocal area have tested positive for the Zika virus. Mosquitoes can become infected if they bite an infected person while he or she still has Zika virus in their blood. Mosquitos testing positive for West Nile virus have been found in the local area every year since 2004, except 2010. The Health District reported 2 human cases of West Nile virus last year.
One of the most important things residents can do to help control mosquito populations is to actively watch for and eliminate mosquito breeding sources, which can be as little as a cup of water. Stagnant water sources are the optimal breeding source for mosquitoes. It’s also important to protect yourself from mosquito bites by wearing insect repellant and covering up at dusk and dawn, when mosquitoes are most active, and where the insects may be present, including yards, parks, and undeveloped areas, especially those where water is present.
The following recommendations can help minimize exposure to mosquito breeding sources and bites:
*Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellants containing DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, Oil of lemon eucalyptus (AOLE), or 2-undecanone.
*Wear pants and long-sleeved shirts to reduce mosquito exposure when outdoors.
*Eliminate areas of standing water around your home, including non-circulating ponds, “green” swimming pools, and accumulated sprinkler runoff, which support mosquito breeding. You can help eliminate the blight and health dangers of green pools by reporting them to local code enforcement agencies. If located in unincorporated Clark County, call (702) 455-4191 or file a complaint through the County website at http://www.ClarkCountyNV.gov. Green pools are pools that have been neglected for so long that their water has turned green from algae and bacteria and they become prime breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
*Make sure doors and windows have tight-fitting screens without tears or holes.
*If you are outdoors in a mosquito infested area, place mosquito netting over infant carriers.
*Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in an unscreened structure.