Types of Mosquitoes
There are a number of different mosquitoes that can impact you, your family and your pets.
The predominant mosquitoes on the Southern Downs are:
- Culex annulirostris (freshwater breeding mosquitoes)
- Aedes notoscriptus (container breeding mosquitoes – usual habitat is the home garden & containers
Although the Culex mosquito lives only for a few weeks the adult mosquito can travel up to 5-10km to feed, with females returning to water to lay her eggs. During the warmer months, the water temperature rises and this rapidly increases the speed at which larvae grow, resulting in an egg becoming an adult mosquito in just five to six days.
Where Mosquitoes Breed
Culex annulirostris (Freshwater):
- Breeding will occur after rainfall
- Shallow freshwater pools
- Grassy drains and depressions
- Rural areas such as ponded waters and dams
They are generally active from mid-spring to late autumn, they feed readily on humans but also other animals and birds. They are generally nuisance biters around sunset
Freshwater breeding mosquitos are a carrier of Ross River and Barmah Forest viruses in Queensland. Other freshwater breeding mosquitoes can also carry these viruses, as well as heartworm, which effects cats and dogs. Landowners are responsible for managing of the control of mosquitoes on their land.
Aedes notoscriptus (Container-breeding mosquitoes)
are the major domestic pest species in south eastern Australia, and they like to breed in:
• natural containers such as: tree cavities and bromeliads
• made containers such as: pot plant saucers, bird baths, discarded tyres, garden rubbish, roof gutters, unmaintained, unchlorinated swimming pools, poorly-maintained rainwater tanks.
Adult container-breeding mosquitoes lay their eggs above the water line in containers. The eggs remain dormant until rain or watering fills these containers, triggering the eggs to hatch into larvae.
Adult mosquitoes will be abundant about a week after this happens. This species also occurs in winter in well-watered gardens and can transmit heartworm to pets. Control of this species requires property owners to be aware of breeding sites and remove or manage them.
Aedes notoscriptus readily attack during the day in shaded areas, but also feed during the evening, night and in the early morning.
Avoid Getting Bitten
Help keep these mosquitoes out of our region by remembering that anything around your property that can fill with water is a potential breeding site. Protect yourself and your household.
You can protect yourself by:
• limiting your time in mosquito-prone areas, especially around dawn and dusk
• wearing loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing with long sleeves and long trousers
• using a personal insect repellent containing picaridin or DEET on exposed skin
• screening doors and windows or using air conditioning
• sleeping under a mosquito bed net
• using mosquito coils, lanterns and insecticide eminators
• switching on a fan as the airflow produced will help keep mosquitoes away
• Removing potential breeding sites
• managing containers which can become water-filled around your property
• screening and maintaining your rainwater tanks.
Council does not provide mosquito fogging services.