Last week’s rainfall should not have much of an impact on the county’s mosquito population, a small benefit of the drought affecting much of the state, officials said.
“We’re at a normal level right now,” said John Marshall, head of the Galveston County Mosquito Control District. “There may be some little outbreaks because of the rain, but it’s mostly soaking in because it’s been fairly dry.”
Residents south of Friendswood and League City may see a few more mosquitoes, and marshy areas of the county are always conducive to new waves of the insects, Marshall said.
The Bolivar Peninsula has also seen a “few more than what they want,” he said.
However, it’s been a relatively slow summer for mosquitoes in Galveston County, Marshall said.
In problematic areas, crews hope to keep the mosquito count, measured by the number of mosquitoes that land on an individual within a minute, in the 2-to-10 range, Marshall said.
A recent count Marshall said he conducted in League City was somewhere in the 2-to-3 range, which is about average for Galveston County in the summer, he said.
Any small outbreak of mosquitoes caused by recent precipitation should end quickly, and Marshall said he expected conditions to dry out within several days.
In several months, mosquito district employees will have to contend with marsh-based mosquitoes, long-range insects that thrive during the fall, which posed a particular challenge last year, Marshall said. Combating those saltwater mosquitoes requires a “whole different strategy,” he said.
Coexistence with mosquitoes is a part of life on the Gulf Coast, and this summer is no different, he said.
Residents can help deter mosquitoes by mowing their lawns, Marshall said. In an effort to keep cool during the day, the insects will seek out the neighbor with the tallest grass.
Residents should also drain containers filled with standing water, he said. Flowerpots, birdfeeders and other open containers that fill with rainfall can become breeding grounds for mosquitoes if the water is left standing.
The county’s mosquito control website, galvestoncountytx.gov/cs/mc, provides daily updates on where and when crews will be spraying for the pesky insects.
The county’s spray hours run between 8 p.m. to 4:30 a.m., five days a week, and residents can call the district to request spraying in a particular area.