September is Peak Transmission Season for West Nile Virus
The Sioux Falls Mosquito Control Program monitors mosquito activity across the community through trapping and surveillance data. Due to this year’s dry season, we saw reduced numbers of our nuisance mosquitoes that follow flooding events, but continue to see an increased presence of the mosquitoes that are most competent carriers of West Nile Virus. “We are seeing a rise in the numbers of mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus, with increased risk of infection from now until the end of September.” says Denise Patton, Health Program Coordinator with the City of Sioux Falls Vector Control Program.
Although the mosquito season is winding down, the risk from West Nile Virus continues until the first hard frost of the season. The Mosquito Control Program is reminding everyone to take personal precautions. “We urge all community members to be vigilant about applying DEET or other approved insect repellents to exposed skin at this time of the year, as well as monitor standing water around your home.” says Patton. It is important to continue using insect repellents, covering exposed skin, and moving indoors when mosquitoes are biting, taking care to minimize time spent outdoors between dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
The Sioux Falls Mosquito Control Program is continuing to survey both adult and larval mosquito populations and is treating appropriately when threshold levels are met.
People wanting to report local concerns about mosquitoes or standing water can leave information on the automated Mosquito Reporting Hotline at 605-367-8799. To receive spray notification via text message, text the word SPRAY to 888-777.