The Joplin Health Department operates a mosquito control program within Joplin’s city limits. This program utilizes occasional fogging to control adult mosquitoes and the treatment of mosquito breeding areas with a larvicide to prevent mosquitoes from becoming adults. Fogging routes will be posted on the City of Joplin website. If citizens are encountering large quantities of mosquitoes, assistance can be requested for the Joplin Health Department by calling 417-623-6122.
The Joplin Health Department utilizes a nonrestricted use pesticide that has been evaluated by the EPA to be of low toxicity to humans. However, citizens are encouraged stay indoors and not drive through areas where fog is visible after application. The fog dissipates rapidly and is usually not visible after 15 minutes of application. Fogging will be conducted in the early morning hours to minimize exposure and disruption of outdoor activities. Health officials also recommend that residents close their windows and bring pets in when their area is being treated. Residents who are raising bees can contact the Health Department and request that their area not be fogged.
While the Health Department’s efforts help with controlling mosquito populations, citizens play a bigger role in controlling their presence in the community. Mosquitoes need standing water to reproduce and need as little as one teaspoonful of water to reproduce. Citizens can their properties for places where water may accumulate and become a haven for breeding mosquitoes. Areas of interest can include gutters, bird baths, untreated swimming pools, and tires. Eliminating the sources of mosquitoes is the most effective way to minimize their presence. Low lying areas that are prone to having standing water can be routinely treated with a mosquito larvicides. Modifying the grading of property can be a more permanent solution to preventing standing water from accumulating.
If mosquito populations are present, citizens can still take the following actions to protect themselves and their loved ones from being bitten:
- Stay indoors at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active.
- Wear long sleeved shirts, socks, and long pants when you must be outdoors.
- Use an approved insect repellent and follow the instructions on the product label.
- Talk to your physician or health care provider before applying insect repellants to young children.
- Make sure your window screens fit tightly and are free from holes.
For more information about mosquito fogging, please contact the Joplin Health Department at 417-623-6122.