FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, June 27, 2016
Office of Communications
Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Reminds Residents about Prevention and Control of Mosquito Problems
Summertime is in full swing and with it comes the dreaded mosquito. Enjoy the outdoors this summer and help stop the spread of mosquito-borne illnesses by following these tips from the Georgia Department of Agriculture and Commissioner Gary W. Black to ensure the safety of family, friends and pets.
- Take steps to protect skin from mosquito bites at all times of the day by applying an insect repellant containing at least 20% DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon-eucalyptus. Also, consider wearing long pants, long-sleeved shirts and closed-toe shoes whenever possible.
- Mosquito-borne diseases that may be rare in the U.S. are common in many foreign countries, so anyone traveling outside of the country should be aware of travel advisories currently in effect. If a person falls ill upon returning home, seek prompt medical attention.
- Homeowners should eliminate areas of standing water around the property such as flowerpots, birdbaths, baby pools and grill covers. Mosquitoes need only about a half an inch of water to breed. It’s also recommended to screen all windows and doors, and patch up even the smallest tear. If there are concerns about mosquito activity, contact a licensed pest control company or your local mosquito abatement district.
With increasing concern about Zika Virus and other mosquito-borne pathogens, some consumers are looking to hire a professional to provide mosquito control on their property. Consumers are urged to only seek advice and use licensed pest control companies that have a category 41 mosquito control license. The Georgia Department of Agriculture is responsible for licensing mosquito control companies and operators who perform mosquito control services. If a contractor is not licensed in mosquito control by the Georgia Department of Agriculture, it is illegal for them to practice mosquito control as a business. There are approximately 450 licensed companies operating in Georgia.
Consumers can search and verify a licensed mosquito control operator by visiting the Department online at www.agr.georgia.gov/pesticide-contractors. Consumers are urged to report unlicensed operators to the Georgia Department of Agriculture at 404-656-4958.
About the GDA The Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA) is the voice of the state’s agriculture community. The department's mission is to provide excellence in services and regulatory functions, to protect and promote agriculture and consumer interests, and to ensure an abundance of safe food and fiber for Georgia, America, and the world by using state-of-the-art technology and a professional workforce. For more information, visit www.agr.georgia.gov.