Chaves County rain leads to mosquito takeover

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ROSWELL, N.M. (KRQE) – Mosquitos in Chaves County have taken over, all thanks to month-long rains. The county is asking residents for help. Mosquitos breed in puddles and small ponds leftover from rain and flooding that are rehydrating eggs and causing them to mature. The county says mosquito eggs can usually live 10 years dry.


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Angelo Gurule, road technical services director for Chaves County, says that these pests are extremely difficult to take care of. “They’re there they’re always there, they are just waiting for the opportunity to hatch so to speak,” Gurule said.

When the mosquitos arrive, so does the concern of diseases like West Nile Virus. The last recorded case of West Nile Virus in Chaves County was in 2015.

The county uses a vast array of tools to deal with the infestation. They use a fogging unit that kills the mature bugs that fly and use a water treatment chemical to kill the larva. Both methods are not harmful to pets or humans. “We do a lot of surveillance, we try to find what waters have mosquito larva and which ones don’t because most mosquito’s larva is going to be in ponds and stuff that does not move if its moving water you not going to have mosquitos inside of it,” Gurule says.
   
Some of the ways that are urging residents in the area from having these mosquito problems are by cleaning up their yard, maintaining weeds removing any free-standing objects that hold water like pools and tires, and using bug repellant.

Chaves County is not alone. Lea, Lincoln, and Eddy counties all have vector crews out at night to try and keep the mosquito problem under control. The bad news is mosquitoes could be active until things cool off in October.

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