Prevent mosquitoes from breeding in your own backyard

Claudia Buccio

Beatriz Hernandez was fixing her plant saucers in the front of her home in Coachella. She said her family was getting ready for the the possibility of some rain hitting over night. Her family tries to stay indoors if there are too many mosquitoes outside, and they are constantly spraying the area with a fumigant.

“There were a lot of mosquitoes outside and inside our house,” Hernandez said.

Jill Oviatt is the public information manager at the Coachella Valley Mosquito and Vector Control District. She said extreme heat and rain are the perfect ingredients to breed mosquitoes.


“It could be about a week where we can see mosquitoes breeding in perfect conditions,” Oviatt said. “It could even just be a few days,.”


April through November are the months in which the reproduction of mosquitoes booms.


“We see regularly West Nile Virus and St Louis Encephalitis infected mosquitoes,” she said. “The ones that test positive for that.”


Oviatt said there is a type of mosquito they are keeping an eye out for due to its potential to do harm to humans. It is a type of mosquito that thrives in areas where standing water goes unnoticed.


“We do have an invasive mosquito in 8 of the 9 cities in the Valley that we’ve detected,” Oviatt said. “This Aedes aegypti mosquito that can carry diseases like Zika, Dengue and Chikungunya, so far in California we’ve had no local transmission from our local mosquito populations.”


Oviatt explained that the district has all the areas with the potential of holding water all mapped out. However, it many cases, residents are letting mosquitoes breed by accident. This happens when there is standing water in buckets, plant saucers, toys, tires or bird baths for several days.


“Dump and drain all of the standing water that you are finding in your house,” she said. “Make it a weekly routine just like you would taking out the garbage.”


Oviatt highlighted the importance of not only dumping and draining containers with standing water but also, scrubbing the interior of any bucket because could be some mosquito eggs hidden inside.


If you are in an area where mosquitoes are already buzzing, “wear long sleeves and pants, any kind of exposed skin, you want to have covered with an insect repellant,” she added.

Hernandez and her family always broom the water away to make sure mosquitoes stay away especially after seeing so many last year.


“Clean up the water, so it doesn’t stay there,” Hernandez said.

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