Mosquito population erupts in Delaware

Mosquito populations are skyrocketing in Delaware, and it's bugging everyone.

Josh Phipps, a longtime Delaware Resident said, "It's extremely annoying. Stay up all night scratching those mosquito bites and yeah, it's very bad."

Katrina Bartlette, a State Park visitor said, "I've been bitten a few times."

We're told mosquito populations in the First State are the worst they've been in quite some time.

Phipps said, "It's probably the worst I've seen, and I've lived in Delaware all my life! It's definitely the worst year."

Dr. Will Meredith, a Program Administrator for Mosquito Control at the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control said, "There's a major eruption going on right now."

Experts say it's all caused by the recent wet weather.

Dr. Meredith said, "It's due to all the rainfall we've had in about the past three weeks. It's about three times the average amount of rain, so it's setting off all kinds of mosquito production in salt marshes and fresh water areas and we're scrambling to handle the onslaught."

Complaints are skyrocketing. Dr. Meredith said, "A lot of public complaints. Downstate, over 2200 just in the past couple of weeks."

Unfortunately, there's not much officials can do until the water subsides.

Dr. Meredith said, "What we're doing right now is concentrating on adult mosquitoes. We've thrown in the towel trying to contend with the larvae because water is everywhere. We would have to spray most of the state and we just don't have the resources to do that and that wouldn't be a good thing to do environmentally, so we're fighting fires now."

As for what you can do in the meantime, Dr. Meredith said, "If you can avoid being in mosquito affected areas, avoid it or try to stay inside particularly around dusk dawn throughout the middle of the night when mosquitoes are most active."

If you have to be outdoors this summer season, the best thing you can do is load up on mosquito spray. This way you can avoid catching any nasty mosquito borne illnesses like Zika or West Nile Virus. 

Some other things you can do are wearing light colored clothing, and avoiding excessive activity outside that would cause you to sweat or breath heavily.

DNREC officials say if you are interested in seeing what areas are being sprayed, you can log on to the mosquito control website and go to the spray zone notification system.

If you want to learn more about mosquito-borne illnesses, you can click here.

Categories: Delaware, Local News

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