Los Angeles, CA (June 22, 2020) — As the weather heats up and Angelenos head outside, the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District (GLACVCD) reminds residents to take action against mosquitoes by removing standing water and wearing insect repellent to protect themselves from mosquitoes and the diseases they can transmit such as West Nile virus. In honor of National Mosquito Control Awareness Week (June 21-27, 2020), GLACVCD is launching the #TipTossTakeAction campaign, providing messages and recommendations for residents, organizations, and cities to work together to increase awareness and preventative measures against mosquitoes.
“The #TipTossTakeAction campaign allows residents and city officials to take an active role in protecting their communities by working closely with GLACVCD staff,” said Mary-Joy Coburn, Director of Community Affairs at GLACVCD. “We continue to provide tools and resources to assist LA County residents and officials in controlling mosquito activity in their communities.”
To kick off National Mosquito Control Awareness Week and the summer season:
- GLACVCD launched TipTossTakeAction.org, a resource website, where individual residents can take the pledge to protect their communities, gather digital resources to share with their neighbors or online networks, and read about the latest mosquito news. To learn more, visit www.tiptosstakeaction.org.
- The District’s #TipTossTakeAction website also includes resources for cities, organizations and local community groups to partner with GLACVCD.
- GLACVCD released a Public Service Announcement video about mosquito prevention. (Available in English and Spanish languages)
- The District also launched #MosquitoWatch, a community program aimed at fighting against mosquitoes and mosquito-borne diseases in local neighborhoods. To learn more or to join Mosquito Watch, visit www.tiptosstakeaction.org.
- GLACVCD’s Facebook page will feature vector control staff highlighting the importance of mosquito control and their roles at the district.
- Visit the District’s social media pages on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (@GLAmosquito) for more posts and to share with your network.
The District confirmed its first West Nile virus mosquito sample of the year early this month. So far this year, the mosquitoes positive for WNV have been detected in Hacienda Heights, Sherman Oaks, and Pico Rivera. West Nile virus is the most prevalent mosquito-borne disease in the U.S. according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). California had the highest number of WNV disease cases in the nation in 2019, with 225 cases reported. Comparatively, Texas had 32 cases and Florida had two cases in 2019. There is no human vaccine for WNV, a disease that can cause debilitating cases of meningitis, encephalitis, and even death.
Greater Los Angeles County is also home to invasive Aedes mosquitoes, which can transmit Zika, dengue, chikungunya, and yellow fever viruses. There is currently no local transmission of these viruses in California; however, the presence of Aedes mosquitoes increases the risk.
Follow the tips below to prevent mosquito bites:
- Apply mosquito repellents to exposed skin before going outdoors and reapply as recommended on the label.
- Wear insect repellent containing CDC and EPA approved active ingredients: DEET®, Picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus.
- Wear light-colored, long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
- Close or repair all unscreened doors and windows to prevent mosquitoes from entering the home.
Follow the tips below to reduce mosquito populations on property:
- Eliminate standing water in clogged rain gutters, rain barrels, discarded tires, buckets, watering troughs, or anything that holds water for more than a week.
- Ensure that swimming pools, spas, and ponds are properly maintained.
- Change the water in pet dishes, birdbaths, and other small containers weekly.
- Request mosquitofish from your local vector control district for placement in ornamental ponds.
- Report neglected (green) swimming pools in your neighborhood to your vector control district.
For more information, residents can contact the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District at 562-944-9656 or online at www.glacvcd.org. Follow on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram @GLAmosquito.
Mary-Joy Coburn, Director of Community Affairs | (562) 758-6510
The Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District is a public health agency formed under the authority of the California State Health & Safety Code. Our mission is to reduce populations of public health vectors below nuisance levels and prevent human infection associated with mosquito-transmitted diseases.