You want your home to be safe from mosquitoes so you can enjoy the outdoors this summer. We, along with the Illinois Department of Public Health, recommend the following preventive measures to help reduce mosquito-breeding sites. With proper water management, together we can keep mosquito breeding and mosquito-borne diseases to a minimum.
- Collect and properly discard all unused artificial containers and old tires.
- Place tight covers over rain barrels, cisterns, septic tanks, and other containers that hold water.
- Change the water in birdbaths and wading pools once a week.
- Check to see if your children’s toys are holding water and creating a mosquito breeding source.
- Check flowerpots for mosquito larvae.
- Properly maintain swimming pools or when not in use, drain and cover them to discourage the development of mosquitoes.
- Stack pails, barrels, tubs, vases, wheelbarrows, and similar containers upside down so water does not accumulate in them.
- Cut, remove, and properly discard excess overhanging vegetation along or over the banks of drainage ditches or stagnant slow-moving streams.
- Eliminate water-holding tree stumps; cut, remove, and properly discard excess vegetation and weeds around lagoons, ponds and similar habitats, so that a shaded canopy of vegetation is not allowed to provide an ideal environment for the development of the mosquito.
- Clean out debris, broken tree limbs, and objects that impede the normal stream flow so polluted pockets of water do not remain.
- Fill or drain any low places where water may stand for more than a week.
- Inspect and clean rain gutters and downspouts if leaves and other debris block them.
- Clean and properly maintain catch basins that hold water.
- If it can hold water, it can breed mosquitoes.