Irene Causes Mosquito Problems - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Irene causes mosquito problems


BERKSHIRES, MA. - All the rain and the heavy flooding from Hurricane Irene have caused a mosquito outbreak late in the year.

Berkshire County Mosquito Control has received hundreds of calls in the past week as more people develop problems.

Chris Horton is the Superintendent. He's been working on controlling the pests since March. He thought they were just about done with the season and then came the rain.

"A couple of weeks ago we were talking about having it made for the season and things were slowing down and we had the mosquitoes on the run...but this is a huge influx in mosquitoes and we're getting a lot of calls a lot of activity from people who want relief," Horton said.

There are more than 100 breeding locations for mosquitoes just in the town of Pittsfield. Horton tells us wherever there's been a problem with flooding over the past few weeks there will be mosquitoes.

"They're diabolical," Horton said. "The mosquito knows when water's receding from a flood plain; it knows that water will flood again and it lays it's eggs on the edge of that water and when the water comes up the egg instantly hatches into larva and starts it's development," Horton said.

Horton drove out to a small neighborhood in Pittsfield to check on one of the breeding zones.

"These are the one's we're most concerned about because the mosquitoes that come out of here will be in this neighborhood," Horton said.

An even bigger concern, Horton says they've found some mosquitoes with West Nile Virus.

"We have high mosquito numbers and presence of disease so people pretty much want to pay attention to their surroundings and be aware of mosquitoes around them," Horton said.

Horton says the best way to reduce mosquito problems is to get rid of any standing water, to wear long sleeves and pants while your outside.

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