Wet weather bringing out more mosquitoes, ticks

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - It's been a wet week, and if you know anything about living in this part of Georgia, that usually mean mosquito activity increases.

Warm, moist weather is the prime breeding climate for mosquitos. Health officials suggest you eliminate standing water around your home and yard. If you have toys, kiddie pools, buckets, or containers around the house, you need to make sure they're not holding on to the rainwater. Health officials say mosquitoes usually bite at dusk and dawn.

If you're outside, make sure you're wearing repellant that contains deet because it's said to be the most effective. The state of Georgia has 42 types of mosquitoes, and Chatham County officials certainly keep an eye out on 13 different species because of the sickness they can cause to humans.

Last year, Mosquito Control confirmed West Nile Virus had been found in our area, but no positive tests have been found so far this year.

"For instance, one of the ones we're concerned about is a mosquito that only bites birds," said Jeffrey Heusel, Chatham County Mosquito Control, Director. "It doesn't bite humans, but it's also responsible for the transmission of the Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus from bird to bird."

Practice and remember the "five D's:" dusk/dawn, dress, deet, and doors. This will help you fight those pesky bloodsuckers.

"We are concerned with mosquitos transmitting West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus, which is very rare and can be a very serious disease," said Robert Thornton, Jr., Georgia Department of Public Health.

Don't forget to look for ticks, too.

"Check for ticks after engaging in an outdoor activity whether it's gardening or hiking or camping. Check yourself for ticks. Check your children for ticks."

If a tick has latched onto you, it needs to be removed immediately. Here are some of the symptoms tick-born disease can cause.

"Rash or unusual redness, swelling of the actual site of the tick bite, fever body aches, tiredness, headache."

Make sure you are aware of these signs and pay attention to them.

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