by Brianna Crandall — June 7, 2017 — With summer fast approaching and outdoor activities planned, termite and pest control provider Terminix, a ServiceMaster company, has just revealed the list of the 20 cities most affected by the menace of mosquitoes, to help businesses and communities plan for a “swat-free” summer, both for comfort and health as well as to create a more pleasant workplace.
Terminix examined service data from branches across the country between April 1, 2016, and April 1, 2017, to determine the areas where customers are most pestered by mosquitoes. Texas earned the “honor” of the top three spots on the list, followed closely by Florida and Tennessee for number of cities. The full list of the top 20 cities is:
- Dallas-Fort Worth, TX
- Houston, TX
- San Antonio, TX
- Atlanta, GA
- Miami-Fort Lauderdale, FL
- Memphis, TN
- Nashville, TN.
- Austin-Round Rock, TX
- Mobile, AL
- Jacksonville, FL
- Cincinnati, OH
- Washington, DC
- Tampa, FL
- Louisville, KY
- Baton Rouge, LA
- Little Rock, AR
- Tulsa, OK
- Birmingham, AL
- Oklahoma City, OK
- Indianapolis, IN
In addition to the itchy reaction most of us are familiar with, infected mosquitoes can spread such diseases as the Zika virus, West Nile virus and malaria. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Zika Virus Web site, “Local mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission has been reported in the continental United States,” with the most recent area of concern centering around Brownsville, Texas.
Terminix says the company is committed to defending its customers’ yards, homes and businesses against these pests, and reminds readers that although professional help is available, individual buildings are the first line of defense against mosquitoes. Stephanie Richards, Ph.D., medical entomologist and associate professor at East Carolina University, asserted:
With knowledge of mosquito biology and perseverance in continually reducing water-holding containers, people can help reduce backyard mosquito populations.
Terminix recently created the Ultimate Mosquito Guide to provide basic information about mosquitoes as well as the following tips for those seeking to reduce the number of mosquitoes on their property:
- Remove sources of standing water. Mosquitoes need standing water in order to lay their eggs. Removing old tires, buckets, plastic sheeting or covers, and old containers that may have filled with water will reduce the available habitat.
- Clean out the gutters. In addition to getting rid of ground sources for standing water, it is also important to maintain your gutter system. Leaves and other debris can build up in your gutters and downspouts, leading to water retention.
- Change water sources weekly. Emptying or replacing the water in outdoor fountains, birdbaths, rain barrels, and plant containers weekly will help break the mosquito breeding cycle.
- Replace outdoor lighting. Mosquitoes, like many insects, can be attracted to light. Special bulbs called “bug lights” emit a different type of light than typical light bulbs. Replacing outdoor lighting with these “bug lights” can help attract fewer mosquitoes.
- Seal and screen entry points. Mosquitoes are small; most species are about one-quarter to one-half of an inch in their adult stage. This means they can enter a building through the tiniest of openings.
Terminix encourages communities to work together to share information, encourage continued action and coordinate efforts.
Terminix offers a number of mosquito control options in branches across the country, including an eco-friendly, attractive targeted sugar bait (ATSB) solution treatment plan. ATSB is said to be more than 90 percent effective in reducing mosquito populations over two to three weeks, and then is reapplied monthly to keep populations down. Terminix says it is safe for use around kids, pets and food. The formula combines mosquito-toxic garlic oil with sugary fruit extracts to bait and eliminate pests. Terminix also offers a knockdown solution for immediate adult mosquito kills, larvicide to kill the immature stages developing in water, and other methods to eliminate the pests.
For more information, visit the Terminix Mosquito Control or Commercial Web pages, or call your local Terminix branch. Memphis, Tennessee-based Terminix provides pest control services and protection against termites, rodents and other pests for approximately 2.8 million residential and commercial customers in 47 states and 22 countries.