- Pets and Animals
- Community Development
Mosquitoes and Toads
Mosquitoes are a part of our natural environment and breed in both fresh and salt water. We cannot eradicate them completely, but we can take precautions to protect ourselves from being bitten.
Managing the mosquito population is vital as many species of mosquitoes are potential carriers of Ross River Virus, Barmah Forest Virus, Dengue Fever and dog heartworm.
There are many things people can do to protect themselves and their homes from mosquitoes, such as:
Protect yourself by:
- Screen all windows and doors to prevent mosquitoes coming inside
- Wear protective clothing, such loose-fitting pants and loose-fitting shirt.
- Use insect repellent (although not as an alternative to protective clothing)
- If you live in an unscreened house or are camping, sleep under a mosquito net
- When mosquitoes are present, spray rooms (particularly behind furniture and other dark places). After securing screens and closing doors, leave the room closed for half an hour before ventilating
- Use air conditioning, fans and/or mosquito coils as a deterrent.
Protect your home by:
- Inspect your house and yard and remove any accumulations of water
- Empty pot plant bases weekly or fill the base with sand to absorb water
- Bromeliads and other water holding plants should be washed out weekly
- Clean roof gutters out regularly and trim back trees which can block gutters
- Ensure rainwater tanks are screened
- Keep swimming pools maintained
- Birdbaths, fishponds and ornamental pools should be washed out weekly and where possible stock with suitable native fish
- Stock dams with native fish and keep the edges clear of vegetation.
How mosquitoes breed
Mosquitoes breed only in water, preferring slow moving or still water. They can breed in freshwater, saltwater and polluted water. While both males and females feed on plant nectar to provide energy for flight, only females take blood meals (which provides protein for egg development). Not all female mosquito species feed on humans though, some preferring animals, birds or reptiles.
Mosquitoes develop through four distinct stages: egg, larva, pupa and adult.
- Eggs - After being exposed to water, eggs will hatch within 24 – 72 hours
- Larvae - The larval stage takes 4 to 5 days
- Pupa - The pupal stage 1 to 2 days
- Adult - A male will live for 1-2 weeks, a female can live for around a month.
A single female can lay up to 200 eggs at a time. Between 10% to 90% of these eggs develop into mature mosquitoes. A flower pot base can support 150 larvae.
Gladstone Regional Council has a program to control mosquitoes in the major breeding sites, particularly around the Gladstone area. The program targets both fresh and saltwater species.
Throughout the year and particularly from October to May, Council monitor and treat breeding sites to reduce the number of mosquitoes affecting residents. Due to the sensitive nature of the environment in which mosquitoes breed, only approved, environmentally safe products are used. Due to the extent of potential breeding sites, it is not always possible to eliminate large adult populations from affecting residential areas. Council will record, investigate and monitor complaints received from the public. However, in some situations, it is impractical to implement control measures.
Discover the secrets of Gladstone Regions parks after dark! Come and join local experts for a fun and informative evening while reducing the number of Cane Toads in our waterways and parks.
The Toad Buster season officially opens at 5pm Tuesday 10 December 2019 at Reg Tanna Park Gladstone with a sausage sizzle and team toad busting session.
Full training, bags, latex gloves, safety glasses and counters are provided.
Please wear closed in shoes, long sleeved shirt, long pants, insect repellent and bring a water bottle and torch (heal torch is preferred) and a sense of adventure.
All participants under the age of 15 must be supervised.
Join us from December 2019 to March 2020 this season at a park near you. Sessions run 6pm to 8pm.
For more information visit Conservation Volunteers Australia.
- Pets and Animals
- Community Development