Green Country Bombarded By Mosquitoes

Friday, June 22nd 2007, 9:58 am
By: News On 6

There's a buzz about Tulsa. No, it's not the Belvedere, and it's not the river. It's mosquitoes! The News On 6’s Steve Berg reports all this rain means millions of the biting bugs are blitzing the city.

Scott Meador knows mosquitoes. His job with the Tulsa County Health Department is to put out mosquito traps around town based on complaints, and he says they've put out four times as many traps as last year.

"We try to base them on where we think the hot spots would be," Meador said.

One trap, he says, was empty on Wednesday, and is already filled with hundreds of mosquitoes. The traps help them know where to spray, and they'll be tested to see if they have West Nile. But as many as there are, the traps can't help control the population.

"Although they do catch mosquitoes, it's a very small percentage of the population that's out there," Meador said.

Blame the rain. But the good news about heavy rain is that it washes away the stagnant water that the West Nile-carrying species tends to favor.

"It will bring out the mosquitoes, but it'll help reduce the number of mosquitoes that can carry West Nile virus. It will keep those numbers down," said Meador. "We have had no West Nile-positive mosquitoes identified yet here in Tulsa County."

The rains can't last forever though, and the stagnant water and the West Nile will follow.

"In my opinion, it's just a matter of time before we find it, hopefully not," Meador said.

Meador says it only takes a tiny amount of standing water to breed mosquitoes, in your bird bath, in your trashcan lids, in your flower pots. He says he once even found mosquito larva in a bottle cap.

For methods to control mosquitoes, click here.