The City of Arnold’s integrated approach to mosquito abatement includes public education, larviciding, adulticiding, and natural control.
How Residents Can Help
Mosquitoes can develop from eggs to adults in as little as seven days and very little water is needed to become a home to mosquito eggs — even a tray under a flowerpot can hatch mosquitoes. Therefore, it’s important to actively remove standing water from your property. Aside from being itchy and annoying, the bite of an infected female mosquito can spread viruses such as West Nile, dengue, chikungunya, encephalitis, malaria and Zika. People may become infected after being bitten by an infected mosquito. Different types of mosquitoes bite during different times of the day and/or night. Since there are no vaccines or medications to prevent or treat these viruses, the best thing to do is to reduce mosquito populations and prevent transmission.
Here’s how you can help keep the mosquito population down near your home and reduce transmission:
1. Dump any standing water. Do not allow water to collect in containers, old tires, puddles, and woodpiles around your house (see image carousel). Once a week, empty and scrub, turn over, cover, or throw out items that hold water, such as tires, buckets, planters, toys, pools, birdbaths, flowerpots, or trash containers. Check inside and outside your home. Tightly cover water storage containers (buckets, cisterns, rain barrels) so that mosquitoes cannot get inside to lay eggs. Keep your grass mowed and weeds under control. Standing water is prime breeding ground for mosquitoes.
2. Keep mosquitoes out of your home. Use screens on windows and doors. Repair holes in screens. Use air conditioning when available.
3. Request a free property inspection. Residents may request a property inspection in which a City of Arnold Inspector will come to your property and look for any areas of concern and offer ideas to reduce mosquito breeding near your home. To request an inspection, contact the Health Department at 636-282-2387.
If you have a concern about a specific location elsewhere in the City, contact the Health Department at 636-282-2387. The City of Arnold treats hundreds of sites in the community for adult and larval mosquitoes, which is a free service for all Arnold residents. After contacting the City, a city representative will respond to your concern within a few days.
How To Prevent Mosquito Bites
It is recommended to use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents. When used as directed, these repellents are proven safe and effective, even for pregnant and breastfeeding women. Always follow product label instructions and reapply as directed.
Outdoor workers may need to use sunscreen in conjunction with insect repellent. Repellents that are applied according to label instructions may be used with sunscreen with no reduction in repellent activity. However, limited data show a one-third decrease in the sun protection factor (SPF) of sunscreens when DEET-containing insect repellents are used after a sunscreen is applied. Products that combine sunscreen and repellent are not recommended, because sunscreen may need to be reapplied more often and in larger amounts than needed for the repellent component to provide protection from biting insects. The best option is to use separate products, applying sunscreen first and then applying the repellent. Due to the decrease in SPF when using a DEET-containing insect repellent after applying sunscreen, users may need to reapply the sunscreen more frequently.
City Mosquito Control Measures
The City of Arnold’s integrated approach to mosquito abatement includes public education, larviciding, adulticiding, and natural control. Each year, City staff evaluates products to see which are the most effective at controlling mosquitoes with the lowest environmental impact.
Larviciding – Larviciding is the method of adding an environmentally friendly time-release growth hormone to standing water that prevents mosquito larvae from becoming adults. The City’s Health Department usually begins larviciding in May in City parks and then citywide with emphasis on public rights-of-way that contain standing water as well as in storm water inlets and catch-basins.
Adulticiding – Adulticiding, or killing adult mosquitoes, is accomplished with a cold aerosol, ultra-low volume “fogging” machine, operated by specialists licensed by the Missouri Department of Agriculture. Starting in May of each year, all areas of the City are sprayed approximately every week for approximately 5 months by the City’s Health Department. Additional fogging is performed the day before special events or holiday celebrations at City parks.
Natural Mosquito Control – Natural control efforts are useful when possible. Bats, purple martins, and some fish eat mosquitoes, so the City’s Parks & Recreation Department intends to install bat and purple martin houses in parks and public grounds, and stock mosquito-consuming fish in ponds and wet storm water basins where practical. (Residents are encouraged to install bat and purple martin houses as well!) The City of Arnold also enforces tall grass and weed cutting throughout the City to minimize mosquito hiding and resting places.
Did you know?
The City of Arnold uses one of the safest mosquito adulticides available on the market today. This product mixes pyrethrins and pyrethroids, which emulate a chemical found naturally in a variety of chrysanthemum called the Dalmatian flower (See Photo). This natural chemical is the most widely known and used botanical insecticide. While it is wise to avoid contact with any insecticide whenever possible, the product the City uses is approved for ground and aerial application in outdoor residential and recreational areas. It has been approved by the United States Environmental Protection Agency for use in the control of mosquitoes. You can find the City of Arnold truck spraying for mosquitoes typically in early mornings when weather conditions fall into a favorable pattern and when mosquitoes are most active.