ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Health officials say you should not let down your guard against mosquitos and the diseases they can carry.
There have been no reported cases of West Nile Virus in our area this year, but the threat isn't over. Recent heavy rain could lead to a big increase in the mosquito population by next week. But you can help keep the pests under control.
While treating natural water holding areas in East Albany today, Dougherty County Public Works officials found these dumped tires and trash near Johnson Road. A quick check found mosquito larvae growing.
Dougherty Co. Public Works Environmental Manager Donell Mathis said, "Right now we are finding just a little larvae in tires. But give it a day or 2."
Mathis said illegal dump sites can actually be more dangerous breeders of mosquito problems than Mother Nature's breeding grounds.
Health department officials say there have been no reported cases of West Nile Virus in this area so far this year, but they remind you that the mosquito danger season is still going. They urge you to take steps to protect yourself.
District Environmental Health Director Dewayne Tanner said "Wear light weighted long sleeve shirts and pants to cover your skin. If you are going to be out at certain times during the day, use mosquito repellant with 20 to 30 percent DEET. That's always good."
Health officials are busy treating standing water, and they urge you to help them. Dump out any standing around your home in buckets or plant stands and report any trash dumps like this.
Mathis said "We're looking for the mosquitoes to start hatching out, probably some this week. Early next week we'll probably really be getting into them, the mosquitoes at that time."
And health officials are working to keep that number of west nile virus victims at zero as long as possible.
Health officials say if you know where tires or illegal dump sites are located in Albany, report them to the 311 service or to Code Enforcement.