What to Know
- Orkin ranked the top 50 metro areas by the number of mosquito customers from April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017
- The Atlanta area topped the list for the fourth year in a row, followed by Washington, D.C., and Chicago
- New York moved up one spot from No. 5.
The DC area is the second worst city in the U.S. for mosquitoes, according to the latest rankings released by pest control company Orkin.
Orkin ranked the top 50 metro areas by the number of mosquito customers, including both residential and commercial patrons, served from April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017.
The Atlanta area topped the list for the fourth year in a row. Chicago and New York made the number three and four spots, respectively.
Mosquitoes are a national scourge and become more active as temperatures rise, with peak season ranging from April to October, Orkin says.
Despite the emergency of Zika virus in recent years, though, a recent Gallup poll found that 90 percent of Americans don't think they're likely to contract the virus. Meanwhile, the CDC has confirmed more than 5,000 cases in the United States since January 2015, with more than 220 transmitted in the U.S. Forty-three of those cases were reported in the DC area, according to the CDC.
The Zika virus is spread by certain kinds of mosquitoes and through sexual contact.
Orkin recommends the following tips to help protect against mosquitoes:
Eliminate Mosquito-Friendly Conditions in and Around Your Yard
- Remove standing water buckets, toys and other containers, as mosquitoes can breed in just an inch of standing water.
- Change water weekly in bird baths, fountains, potted plants and any containers that hold standing water.
- Keep pool water treated and circulating.
- Regularly clean gutters so water doesn’t pool.
- Trim shrubbery, as adult mosquitoes like to rest in dark areas with high humidity, such as under the leaves of lush vegetation.
- 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.
Eliminate Entry Points
- Repair and use window and door screens to help prevent entry.
- Close gaps around windows and doors to prevent mosquitoes from getting inside.