Mosquito1

With consistent warmer temperatures, bugs will also start to appear in increasing numbers.

Jonathan Larson, Nebraska extension entomology educator, said there is concern with a possible influx of mosquitoes.

He said Nebraska should expect container type mosquitoes from any debris that was brought up from the flooding.

“Those (container type mosquitoes) are the ones we worry about more because they can transmit more viruses,“ Larson said.

The most prevalent mosquito carried disease in Nebraska is the West Nile virus.

Mosquitoes are not the only thing people have to be wary about as there is an apparent outbreak of midges.

Midges, also called gnats, resemble mosquitoes but are harmless with small mouth parts that are not elongated into a piercing structure for blood feeding.

“If you ever seen like this cloud of insects dancing around each other, those are midges mating,” Larson said.

Larson said midges do not cause direct harm to people, but has had people calling him reporting seeing thousands of them in their yards.

Larson said people with any sort of permanent standing water on their property can use mosquito dunks.

Mosquito dunks are organic product that contains Bt, a natural mosquito larvicide, which kills mosquito larvae.

Larson said the strain of Bt bacteria in dunk are specific to flies.

“Mosquitoes are a type of fly who when their larva ingest what dissolves from the dunk then you get control over them,” Larson said.

The more water there is, the more dunk you have to use, Larson said.

There are other ways to deal with a mass influx bugs coming arriving with the summer weather.

“Everyone should be going and emptying out containers in their yard, “ he said.

“If you have a bird bath you should empty it out once a week and refill it and make sure to dump out any mosquito larva that are in there.”

He said you should also check to see if your gutters are clean and are flowing because if there’s any back up water that’s in there then it could be a mosquito breeding ground.

“People should wear their repellents, those are going to be very helpful in keeping the bites down,” Larson said.

Jenny Steventon, environmental health coordinator with Sarpy-Cass Health Department, said another thing people can do is to protect their homes.

“If your window is open make sure to have a window screen or if you’re sleeping outside, sleep with mosquito netting,” Steventon said.

“Some people will get bit regardless, but the biggest thing is prevention.”

She said the health department has two types of traps they use for mosquitoes and they rotate the traps between the counties.

One trap looks for mosquitoes that carry the West Nile virus while the second trap that was employed last year targets mosquitoes carrying the Zika virus.

Steventon said the collected mosquitoes are sent to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

She said each individual mosquito is analyzed to determine if the mosquito is carrying either West Nile or Zika virus.

The mosquito collection process will begin the last week of May.

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