Logo of TASD on a picture of the county

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Mosquitoes

Q. Do all mosquitoes bite?
A. No. Only female mosquitoes “bite” humans or more correctly, feed on them. Blood provides the protein necessary for female mosquitoes to produce eggs. The average mosquito consumes one millionth of a gallon of blood per bite. Female mosquitoes may feed multiple times and will produce one batch of eggs for each successful blood meal.
Q. What diseases do mosquitoes carry?
A. Mosquitoes are known to have carried diseases such as malaria, yellow fever, dog heartworm, West Nile virus and St. Louis encephalitis. Only in the last century has it been known that mosquitoes are capable of spreading disease. The diseases are often viruses that are picked up by the mosquito when it feeds on an infected host. When the mosquito feeds on another host, it can then spread the disease.
Q. Why do mosquito bites itch?
A. When a female mosquito bites, she injects a bit of saliva that prevents the blood from clotting and allows it to flow freely. It’s your body’s allergic reaction to the saliva that causes the swelling and the itch later on.

Mosquito Control

Q. Why are mosquitoes controlled in the larval state?
A. The most effective and economical method to reduce adult mosquitoes is to prevent their emergence from as many breeding sites as possible.
Q. Does TASD use any chemical methods of control?
A. There are some chemical products utilized for mosquito control. The specific products used may vary from season to season depending on economic conditions and specific control needs. All of the products utilized by the TASD have been registered and approved for use by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). If you would more information on the specific products being used at this time, please contact the TASD at 419.726.7891.
Q. Why doesn’t TASD concentrate on using biological control methods, such as insect-eating birds?
A. TASD utilizes several biological methods to control mosquitoes, including mosquitofish, and several commercial products that use bacteria as the active ingredients. Predators such as purple martins and bats have varied diets and eat prey other than just mosquitoes. TASD does encourage homeowners to maintain birdhouses and bat boxes. Nesting boxes for house wrens, tree swallows, and a bat box are in use at the District headquarters.
Q. Why are mosquitoes more abundant some years than others?
A. Year-to-year fluctuations in mosquito populations exist due to differences in the number of eggs hatching under varying rainfall. Frequent rainstorms create more standing water. Greater numbers of mosquitoes are always found in uncontrolled areas.
Q. How much will it cost if I call mosquito control?
A. There is no direct additional cost for Lucas County residents who request mosquito control. Real estate taxes provide the funds for the program at a rate that fluctuates on a yearly basis.
Q. Where do the mosquitoes come from?
A. Mosquito larvae often live in lowland "floodwaters" or wet woods. If your property has standing water for more than 7 days or if you know of surrounding properties with this problem, please contact TASD. TASD keeps records each year of mosquito-breeding sites; there is always the chance that larviciding crews may be missing your area.
Q. Why doesn’t TASD drain marsh and wetland areas?
A. Due to concern for the environment, the District does not attempt to eliminate all wetland areas. TASD does have an ongoing program to clean permanent ditches and creeks of logjams, blockages, and stagnant water. TASD concentrates on those areas which will directly benefit mosquito control and doesn’t engage in projects which will have only cosmetic value.
Q. How can I get mosquito fish for my pond?
A. Mosquito fish are available free of charge to residents with rock garden pools, lily ponds or farm ponds. These fish are prolific breeders and will consume great numbers of mosquito larvae and pupae. They should not be placed with bass, bluegills, or goldfish, since they soon become prey for the larger fish.

If you have a question that is not on this page to ask, you can e-mail TASD at pbauman@tasd-mosquitoes.org.