“Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.” Greenville Prepares for Zika Virus Potential

zika-testing-in-GreenvilleDid you know local testing for Zika Virus has begun? Over 100 South Carolinians have been tested for the Zika Virus. While only one resident has been found to have Zika and it was a travel-related case, Greenville is prepared for the potential for a local Zika Virus outbreak. From mosquito monitoring, mosquito abatement, emergency response and health care – in true Southern fashion, bring it on Zika, we’re ready!

Greenville Mosquito-Borne Virus Monitoring

Monitoring local mosquito populations for mosquito-borne disease such as West Nile Virus, LaCrosse Encephalitis, Easter Equine Encephalitis has been a long time activity of South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC). In partnership with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the DHEC samples local mosquito populations so they can stay abreast of any potential outbreaks. By monitoring these diseases in mosquitoes, humans, birds and horses, it is believed they will know relatively quickly if a worrisome outbreak occurs. They then report the arbovirus activity to health-care providers, local mosquito control and the public. If a particular area is experiencing increased activity, healthcare providers can diagnose better; mosquito control efforts can be ramped up, and the general public can take extra precautions at home.

Local Mosquito Control Efforts

Mosquito Squad of Greenville's barrier sprayMany local municipalities provide some mosquito control, although limited by budgets. These efforts are mostly based on complaints from the local population. Greenville County, for instance, provides mosquito control for Greenville, Simpsonville and Traveler’s Rest. They also are cleaning up trash where mosquitoes could breed. Your local mosquito control hotline can be found at SCDHEC.gov. Greer cut their mosquito control efforts during the recession, but can get service from the city of Greenville if you call to request it. If your city or county doesn’t offer mosquito control, be sure to call us at Mosquito Squad of Greenville – we’ve got your back!

Zika Preparedness in Greenville Healthcare

According to Greenville Online, Greenville Health System has a biological readiness plan that includes Zika Virus outbreak readiness. The plan includes laboratory support, disease evaluation and hospital readiness. They are following all CDC guidelines in regards to considering Zika as a possibility in patients with symptoms who have traveled to affected areas. The staff has also prepared with additional training in obstetrics and pediatrics for diagnosing and managing the negative health effects that could result from a pregnant woman becoming infected with Zika.

Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville.
Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville, with Tillman.

While the city and county of Greenville are prepared for the Zika Virus, it would be best to avoid the virus altogether. Avoiding mosquitoes and mosquito bites is your best method of Zika prevention. At Mosquito Squad of Greenville we can keep your yard mosquito free all season long with our traditional mosquito barrier spray. Eliminating 85-90% of mosquitoes in your yard on contact, our barrier spray continues to work for up to 21 days. Call today 864-277-4299

Mosquito Control in Greenville: The Best Mother’s Day Gift Yet

Mother's Day-gift-hanging-basketStruggling to find your Mother, Wife or Mother-to-be the perfect Mother’s Day gift? Tired of the annual hanging baskets, jewelry or pampering with manicures and pedicures that have become the go-to gifts? We have an idea for you. The best Mother’s Day ever can be yours to give with a season of mosquito and tick free outdoor living. Perfect timing for Mother’s Day, the mosquitoes are out and they are biting. Don’t let the mother in your life suffer the annoying pests or worse yet let them chase her inside. Give the gift of mosquito control this Mother’s Day.

Pest Free Outdoor Lifestyle

tick-proofing-my-greenville-yardIf the Mother in your life likes to garden, relax on the patio or near the pool, mosquito control is a great gift for her. There is nothing worse than sweating in the garden, tending your vegetables and flowers only to be held up by biting mosquitoes as you spend more time swatting than gardening. In Greenville, we have multiple breeds of Aedes mosquitoes that are aggressive daytime feeders. They will not be easily deterred by a flailing garden hat, leaving your outdoor loving mom covered in itchy ugly bites that could even make her sick.

Peace of Mind

Mosquitoes are known to carry a variety of dangerous diseases like West Nile Virus and Zika Virus that could harm children and adults alike. Mother’s love to know their loved ones are safe. Give the mom in your life peace of mind this Mother’s Day with mosquito control from Mosquito Squad of Greenville. If you have a Mother-to-be in your life, she’ll certainly appreciate knowing she is doing everything she can to protect her growing baby from the dangers of Zika, without having to stay indoors all season long.

Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville.
Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville, with Tillman.

If you’re ready to be the hero this Mother’s Day, give your Mom the best Mother’s day gift ever with a season of mosquito and tick free outdoor living. Call Mosquito Squad of Greenville today to get her first spray set up, so she can begin enjoying her yard again. 864-277-4299

The Zika Virus is Worse than Expected

Over the past week, the Zika Virus has returned to the news in a big way. It all started when the CDC reported that the negative health effects of the Zika Virus are worse than they suspected as research is uncovering more complications in those infected by the Virus. Along with the CDC’s statement, there have been several new reports released since we last updated you, bear with us as we give you the run down.

Zika-research-discovers-more-health-complications

Zika Virus has Been Confirmed as a Cause of Microcephaly in Infants

The increase in microcephaly in infants in Brazil coinciding with a Zika Virus epidemic is what brought the Zika Virus into the world spotlight. Scientists have been working diligently to confirm the link between Zika Virus in pregnant women and microcephaly in infants. This week they have confirmed the causal relationship that Zika Virus can indeed cause microcephaly in infants whose pregnant mother becomes infected with the virus. Medscape reported in their story that a mother infected in the 1st and 2nd trimesters, when brain development is at its peak, increases the risk for microcephaly in her baby. There are many more studies underway to determine the risk of other birth defects (and the extent of the risk.) Right now the range is broad, between 1-29% of pregnant women infected with Zika Virus will have a baby with microcephaly.

Zika-causes-microcephaly-in-infants

More Zika Birth Defects

The New England Journal of Medicine reported on a study that found a variety of other birth defects linked to Zika Virus infection during pregnancy. The range of defects includes cerebral calcification, central nervous system alterations, intrauterine growth restrictions, abnormal arterial flow in the umbilical arteries and cerebral arteries, developmental failure in part of the brain, Macular hypoplasia, Blake’s pouch cyst, insufficient amniotic fluid, microcephaly and even resulted in 2 stillbirths. With these new potential birth defects along with the confirmation of microcephaly being caused by Zika, it is more important than ever to follow the CDC’s advice for couples thinking about pregnancy. Zika Virus can be transmitted through sexual activity, meaning couples exposed to Zika need to take extra precautions if they are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant.

Zika Has Been Linked to Health Complications Outside of Pregnancy & Newborns

Two major health complications in non-pregnant/non-newborn individuals have been linked to Zika Virus. While there are many more studies needed to confirm the link, Zika is suspected to cause Guillain-Barre syndrome and acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM). Both Guillain-Barre and ADEM are auto-immune disorders that can severely disrupt the lives of those affected. Guillain-Barre can even lead to death if not treated promptly and effectively. Auto-immune disorders are when a person’s immune system mistakenly attacks the body.

CDC 2016 Zika Virus Mosquito Range United States

The Zika Mosquito’s Geographical Reach has Been Expanded

Not long before the news broke of the extent of the Zika Virus’s health effects, the CDC updated their report on the geographical reach of the Zika transmitting mosquitoes Aedes Aegypti & Aedes Albopictus. While both mosquitos were already reported as being in Greenville and Spartanburg area, the rest of the United States is experiencing an increased risk as the number went from 12 states to 30 states affected.

Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville.
Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville, with Tillman.

As we await the Zika Virus to play out during the 2016 mosquito season, it is vital that we think of prevention as the best method of protection. Start by following the CDC’s travel guide, advising pregnant women not to travel to affected countries. Avoiding mosquitoes and mosquito bites is really the best way to lower your risk. Following the 5 T’s of mosquito control will help lower the population of mosquitoes in your yard, but Mosquito Squad of Greenville’s traditional barrier spray is the best way to eliminate mosquitoes from your yard long term. Our barrier treatment eliminates 85-90% of mosquitoes in your yard and works for up to 3 weeks. Sign up for the season and we’ll come back every 2-3 weeks automatically, you don’t have to do a thing. Call today 864-277-4299.

Is the Zika Mosquito in Greenville?

A common question, with an easy answer: Yes. The Aedes Aegypti & the Aedes Albopictus (Asian Tiger) mosquitoes call Greenville and all of the Southeast United States home. These mosquitoes are easy to detect by their daytime feeding habits and the stripes on their bodies and legs that are their namesake. While the Aedes Aegypti is the main mosquito being blamed for current Zika outbreaks in Colombia and Brazil, there are potentially more mosquitoes capable of carrying & transmitting the Zika Virus. We will update you with that information as it becomes available.

The Aedes Aegypti

Greenville_Aedes-Aegypti-Zika-carrierWidely known as the “yellow fever mosquito”, the Aedes Aegypti is an especially dangerous disease vector with its daytime feeding habits and container habitation. Commonly using unused flower pots or spare tires for its breeding grounds, the Aedes Aegypti thrives quite well in urban areas. These mosquitoes look very similar to the Asian Tiger mosquito with white stripes on the legs and body. The key difference being the white scales above its head on the thorax in the shape of a violin. Aedes Aegypti are key vectors in spreading many diseases such as chikungunya, dengue, yellow fever and Zika Virus.

The Asian Tiger Mosquito

The Asian Tiger mosquitoes (Aedes Albopictus) hails from the same mosquito family as the Aedes Aegtypti. They surprisingly have lead to the decline of the Aedes Aegypti in the Southeast United States as their larval forms out compete the Aedes Aegypti larvae. Like the Aedes Aegypti, the Asian Tiger mosquito thrives in fresh water stored in containers. They survive well in urban/suburban areas and are also a daytime feeder. Their appearance is very similar to the Aedes Aegypti, the key difference being the white stripe running down the center of the head and thorax. The Asian Tiger mosquito is vector of many diseases such as dengue fever, Eastern Equine Encephalitis and Zika Virus.

Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville.
Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville, with Tillman.

One of your best lines of defense against these aggressive mosquitoes is to eliminate standing water in your yard. Follow our 5 T’s of Mosquito Control for checking your property for mosquito breeding risks. To gain peace of mind, be sure to give us a call, we can eliminate 85% of all species of mosquitoes on your property with our mosquito barrier spray. 864-277-4299 Take back your yard with help from Mosquito Squad of Greenville.

Summer is Over: But Greenville Mosquitoes Didn’t Get the Memo

mosquitoe squad of greenvilleJust because the official end of summer is here, doesn’t mean mosquito season is over. Quite the contrary in fact. Mosquitoes will be out in Greenville for quite a while still with the warm weather we are still fortunate enough to have. As we emerge from our air conditioned homes to spend more time outdoors, living a pest-free outdoor lifestyle is more important now than in the heat of the summer. Whether you’re hosting a large event in your Spartanburg backyard, a birthday party at your Anderson home or a pool party at Lake Keowee this fall, make sure you and your guests are protected from annoying and dangerous mosquitoes.

Event Spray Greenville

Hosting a large event at your home, such as a wedding, fundraiser or family reunion is a perfect way to make use of your outdoor living space this fall. There are so many responsibilities when it comes to organizing such an event that it can be easy to over-look something like pest-control. No matter how great of a host or hostess you are, no matter how good the food is, no matter how fun the people are, nothing is going to keep the party from ending at dusk if the mosquitoes come out hungry. Make sure your party can extend well into the lovely South Carolina evening with mosquito control from Mosquito Squad of Greenville.

Pest Free Outdoor Living Spartanburg

Enjoy your yard this summer with mosquito protection.
Keep your Pool party Mosquito Free.

With temperatures cooling a little bit at night and not climbing quite so high during the day, early autumn is a perfect time to host a pool party. Your guests can enjoy the pool and patio all day without being sweltered by the mid-summer heat. When it comes to fall pool parties, special event mosquito spray is a great way to make sure your guests don’t exit the pool with a swarm of mosquitoes waiting for them.

Mosquito Control Greer

We are lucky to live in the south where beautiful weather can be found year round. As long as it’s not the scorching heat of summer, outdoors is the best place to host a child’s birthday party. With yard games and piñatas, keeping the kids, the noise and the mess outside is a lot less stressful for you and more fun for them. Keep your child and their friends protected from mosquitoes and mosquito-borne illnesses such as West Nile Virus with our mosquito event spray. It will eliminate up to 90% of the mosquitoes in your yard for your entire party.

Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville.
Billy & Michele Scales, owners of Mosquito Squad of Greenville, with Tillman.

Contact Mosquito Squad of Greenville to learn more about eliminating 85-90% of the mosquitoes in your yard with mosquito event spray or a season long mosquito control program. You can reach us by phone at (864) 277-4299 or via email at greenville@mosquitosquad.com.

What does a mild winter mean for Greenville, SC mosquito and tick populations?

Here in the South we love mild winters. Being able to go out in short sleeves in dead winter, opening your windows to let in fresh air when other parts of the country are under freeze advisories and even the arrival of an Indian summer add to the benefits of living in the Greenville area. I often have homeowner’s ask me if having a mild winter will make the mosquito and tick populations greater. The answer to this question is as complex as it is simple. A mild winter in itself will not impact the insect population, however the mild winter combined with the absence of freezing temperatures for an extended period of time will. Winter temperatures have to be extremely cold for a long time to affect mosquitoes and ticks. So our mild winter does not mean that there will be more of mosquitoes and ticks out there. This only means the early arrival of spring-like temperatures will cause mosquitoes and ticks to become active earlier.

Take for example the Asian tiger mosquito whose presence is becoming more and more prevalent in the Carolina’s. The Asian tiger mosquito overwinters as an egg.  The eggs lie

The Asian Tiger mosquito
The Asian Tiger mosquito eggs quickly hatch as the weather warms.

dormant until the weather warms up enough to cause them to hatch. Much like a chicken egg, but Mother Nature is in charge of keeping the nest warm. A mild winter can cause the Asian’s eggs to hatch sooner than usual.  If the eggs hatch earlier this can perpetuate early breeding and in turn can lead to larger mosquito populations by mid-late summer.

Another factor that increases mosquito populations is rainfall. During a spring with above average rainfall mosquito populations will boom out of control. Anytime the mosquito population increases the risk of becoming sick from a mosquito-borne illness such as West Nile virus, and Encephalitis increases.  In a perfect scenario a drier spring would mean a smaller mosquito population, right?  The caveat is the fact that a drier spring will cause homeowners to water their lawns and gardens more frequently. This increase in watering on the human end can increase standing water around your home and yard. Mosquitoes will then begin breeding

Small caps can become the home of hundreds of mosquito eggs quickly.
Small caps can become the home of hundreds of mosquito eggs quickly.

in the bases of your flower pots, birdbaths, and other areas within your landscape where remnants of recent watering remain. It is indeed a vicious cycle; this is why it is important to inspect the area around your home frequently to ensure there are no forgotten areas where water could pool and serve as a mosquito breeding ground. To put this into perspective; the top off of a single 12 ounce soda bottle can serve as a nursery for hundreds of mosquito eggs.

Tick populations are influenced by the availability of a blood host to feed on.  Believe it or not, an abundant acorn population can bump up the tick population. More acorns mean that more rodents will come to feed on the acorns that cover the ground. Ticks will thrive in these conditions because of the abundance of mice to feed from. In areas where Lyme

Acorns attract rodents who are the host for many ticks
Acorns attract rodents who are the host for many ticks

disease is common this influx of mice playing host to deer ticks will also increase the risk of coming into contact with a tick carrying the disease.

You may ask what can I do to prevent being overthrown by mosquitoes and ticks in my own yard? The answer is simple. When it comes to mosquitoes, keeping your property free of standing water that could serve as a breeding ground is essential. Also, as with all insects, keeping your property free of debris and mowed will serve as a deterrent. Having your property treated by a licensed professional is crucial to eradicating an insect problem before it becomes out of control.

Mosquito Squad of Greenville makes it easy to control both mosquitoes and ticks. Our safe and effective barrier spray program kills mosquitoes and adult ticks and prevents against more mosquitoes entering into your treated area. We also offer a tick tube program that will reduce the chance of you coming into contact with a potential disease carrying tick by up to 90%. Call us today for a free quote • (864) 277 – 4299

Keith-Drew,-Owner

 

Keith Drew, Owner
email: greenville@mosquitosquad.com