What You Can Do

Preventing Mosquitoes

  • DRESS in light-colored long sleeves and pants when outside to cover skin.
  • DRAIN standing water in your yard. Mosquitoes typically breed in spots such as old tires, flower pots, rain gutters and bird baths.
  • DEFEND yourself. Limit outdoor activity and apply repellent before going outside. DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide) is an ingredient to look for in your insect repellent to help increase protection. This ingredient is known to provide defense against mosquitoes and approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Other alternatives include organic products such as orange spray, eucalyptus or citronella. Follow label instructions and always wear repellent when outdoors.

Take Action Around Your Home

The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) suggests the following steps you can take in and around your home to help prevent mosquitoes from breeding:

  • Empty or rid of cans, buckets, old tires, pots, plant saucers and other containers that hold water weekly.
  • Keep gutters clear of debris and standing water.
  • Remove standing water around structures from flat roofs.
  • Change water in pet dishes daily.
  • Cover trash containers.
  • Change water in wading pools and birdbaths several times a week. Keep fountains running to keep water moving.
  • Water lawns and gardens carefully; prevent water from standing for several days.
  • Add Western Mosquitofish to ornamental ponds.
  • Dump out water that collects in outdoor toys.
  • Properly maintain swimming pools and keep them running up to 8 hours a day.
  • Repair leaks around your home and yard that may cause standing water.
  • Treat front and back door areas of homes with residual insecticides if mosquitoes are abundant nearby.
  • Screen rain barrels and openings to water tanks or cisterns.
  • Rinse and scrub vases and other indoor water containers weekly.
  • If mosquito problems persist, consider pesticide applications for vegetation around the home.

About Mosquitoes

  • Female mosquitoes can lay 100-300 eggs at a time and up to 3,000 eggs in her lifetime.
  • Some species can survive dry conditions for up to 8 months. When water covers the egg, they hatch and become adults in about a week.
  • Mosquitoes can breed in as little as 1/2 inch of standing water, or as small as a bottle cap.
  • Mosquitoes take as few as 4 days to develop into adults.
  • Male mosquitoes live 7-10 days and females can live up to 30 days (some species even longer).

Mosquito Prevention

Visit the spray maps page for more information relating to spray notifications, mosquito populations, recent data and FAQs.

For information on how to report standing water, see our Mosquito Prevention Flyer.

Mosquito Chart

Learn more about mosquitoes from our mosquito chart which explains species-specific information and the types of illness associated with certain mosquitoes. The mosquito chart also includes information on mosquito behaviors, transmission cycle, symptoms and other important things to know.