Invasive Aedes Mosquitoes
Invasive Aedes mosquitoes, or “ankle biter” mosquitoes, like Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus are small black mosquitoes with white stripes on the legs and back. They bite during the day, especially around the legs and ankles. They will usually bite multiple times.
Invasive Aedes mosquitoes were introduced to California. They can carry viruses like Zika, dengue, chikungunya, and yellow fever. So far, we have not seen mosquitoes spreading these diseases to people in San Diego County.
Aedes notoscriptus (the Australian Backyard Mosquito) has also been found in the County of San Diego. This mosquito can also spread diseases including dog heartworm.
Invasive Aedes mosquitoes lay their eggs in small containers of water. They will breed in backyards and even inside homes. When it is warm, these mosquitoes can go from egg to adult in less than one week.
Invasive Aedes Mosquito activity in San Diego County
Prevent Mosquito Breeding
Invasive Aedes mosquitoes are "container breeders". This means they like to lay their eggs in small containers of standing water. Even 1/4" of water is enough! Their eggs can even survive for over a year in dry containers. When water is added, they will hatch. Aedes mosquitoes do not fly far. If you are getting bitten, the mosquitoes are probably coming from somewhere close by.
To stop mosquito breeding, check for and dump out standing
inside and outside at least once a week, in places such as buckets, birdbaths, saucers under potted plants, and children's toys. Use our Prevention Checklist as a guide to get started!
Add mosquito fish to water in your backyard ponds, fountains, and unfiltered pools. Mosquitofish are available free of charge from the Vector Control Program. You can also use a mosquito larvicide which can be purchased at home and garden stores. Make sure to follow all instructions on the label.
If you collect rainwater, make sure your rain barrel remains securely screened/sealed to stop mosquito breeding.
Once you have dumped out standing water around your home, talk to
your neighbors. When we work together, we can stop mosquitoes!
Protect Yourself Against Bites
Put screens on windows and doors. Screens can stop Aedes mosquitoes from coming indoors.
Wear long sleeves and pants. They bite indoors and outdoors, and during the day.
Use insect repellent that has an active ingredient that is registered by the EPA and recommended by the CDC . Examples of active ingredients are DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, Para-menthane-diol, 2-undecanone, or IR3535. Follow the directions on the label.
Find the right insect repellent for you and your family using this guide.
Follow the steps above to stop Aedes mosquito breeding and to protect
yourself from bites. Help your neighbors do the same. To request an
inspection, or for questions and advice – contact the Vector Control