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Orkin Says Detroit Among 10 Worst US Cities For Mosquitoes

Detroit is No. 7 on the list.

May 20, 2019 - 11:00 pm
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DETROIT (WWJ) -- Temperatures are rising and summer is on its way. So are the mosquitos.

And for those who live in Detroit, that can be a scary thought.

The Motor City is among the 10 worst U.S. cities for mosquitoes, according to Orkin. The pest control company released its annual Top 50 Mosquito Cities List on Monday, with Detroit checking in at No. 7, up four spots from last year.

Orkin compiles the list based on the number of new mosquito treatments in the past year. The data spans from April 1, 2018 to March 31, 2019.

Here's the Top 20 rundown, showing the change since last year: 

  1. Atlanta
  2. New York (+1)
  3. Washington, D.C. (+1)
  4. Chicago (+1)
  5. Houston (+2)
  6. Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas (-4)
  7. Detroit (+4)
  8. Philadelphia (+9)
  9. Charlotte, N.C. (+1)
  10. Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (+5)
  11. Phoenix (+14)
  12. Los Angeles (+4)
  13. Boston (+20)
  14. Miami (-6)
  15. Baltimore (+27)
  16. Richmond, Va. (+14)
  17. Nashville (-4)
  18. Tampa (-4)
  19. Indianapolis (+5)
  20. St. Louis (-14)

Grand Rapids was the only other Michigan city on the list, coming in at No. 29.

See the full list here.

Mosquito season starts when spring temperatures arrive, and they are most active when temperatures rise above 80 degrees, according to Orkin. The company says breeding season is usually July through September, while peak West Nile virus season is typically late August through September, and sometimes lasts through October. Mosquito activity usually drops when temperatures dip below 50 degrees Fahrenheit and stops when temperatures drop below freezing (32 degrees Fahrenheit).

"Mosquitoes are more than annoying; they can be a major health threat," Orkin entomologist Dr. Mark Beavers said in a press release. "Mosquito-borne diseases such as West Nile virus, encephalitides, dengue, chikungunya and for those who may remember, Zika, threaten the safety of humans and pets."

Orkin recommends the following tips to help residents protect against mosquitoes:

Eliminate Mosquito-Friendly Conditions in and Around Your Yard

  • Any object that has the potential to hold water should be removed or cleaned out frequently, as mosquitoes can breed in just an inch of standing water.
  • Clean gutters to avoid rainwater build up. Be sure to check for puddles that form on the roof from rain water, leaking pipes or even condensation from air conditioners.
  • Change the water (at minimum) weekly in bird baths, fountains, potted plants and any containers that hold standing water, including wading pools.
  • Keep swimming pool water treated and circulating.
  • Trim shrubbery, as adult mosquitoes like to rest in dark, protected areas with high humidity, such as under the leaves of lush vegetation.

Prevent Mosquitoes from Biting

  • Wear loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and long pants. Mosquitoes can bite through tight clothing.
  • Apply an EPA-registered mosquito repellent containing products such as DEET, picaridin or IR3535.