With all of the heat and storms we’ve been having in the Carolinas, the mosquitoes are out in full force. These pesky insects can quickly put a crimp in summer fun and become a nuisance. In addition, there is the recent concern over the potential transmission of the Zika virus. HOA communities and homeowners alike can be proactive in trying keep mosquito infestations at a minimum.

One of the best ways to prevent the breeding and spreading of mosquitoes to eliminate standing water around your home. But how can you do this?

  • Empty out children’s pools, birdbaths, toys, or other containers that collect water. Don’t wait for water to evaporate on its own.
  • Tightly cover any containers that cannot be emptied to keep mosquitoes and rainwater out.
  • Check septic tanks or air conditioning units for leaks that may leave puddles or be areas where mosquitoes could hide.
  • Clean, wipe out, and refill birdbaths frequently to rid them of potential mosquito eggs or larvae and prevent them from becoming a breeding ground.
  • If you have a pond, consider adding mosquito fish, which eat mosquito larvae and can cut back on breeding.

Other ways to help control mosquitoes include:

  • Keeping your yard trimmed and reducing the number of dark, humid areas where mosquitoes can hide. Spray these areas with an approved insecticide.
  • Ask about professional insecticide application that can help break the life cycle of mosquitoes and keep them out of your yard.
  • When you are outside, wear an approved insect repellant that contains DEET or another effective ingredient for repelling mosquitoes.
  • Make sure screens, windows, and door close tightly to reduce the chances of mosquitoes entering your home.
  • Kill any mosquitoes that get into your home.

The HOA should talk to landscapers or maintenance crews about regularly checking these areas on community property. While homeowners are responsible for their yards, the HOA can be proactive in reducing infestations in common areas. It can also be a good idea to talk to local pest/insect control companies or the county to see if they are taking any prevention measures and how the HOA community can participate.

If homeowners do notice common areas where mosquitoes are prevalent, they should be encouraged to notify the HOA. Proper steps can be taken try to eliminate standing water or identify other potential causes and solutions. When homeowners, property managers, and the HOA work together, they can help reduce the breeding and spreading of mosquitoes.

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