Report a Mosquito Problem
You can request help in controlling mosquito problems. For large infestations, aerial spraying or truck spaying may be scheduled. Smaller problems may require a site inspection, depending on the location and time of year.
Miami-Dade County’s sub-tropical environment is home to about 45 different species of mosquitoes. A few species can transmit diseases such as West Nile Virus, Dengue Fever, Encephalitis, Malaria, Zika and dog heartworm.
To help control breeding of mosquitoes, report properties which have pools not being maintained. This could be abandoned homes or pools not being maintained by the property owner.
A community pool such as apartment complex or Homeowners Association which is not maintaining their pool can be reported directly to the Miami-Dade County Health Department at 305-623-3500.
Learn how to stop mosquitoes at home
Use the Drain and Cover method to prevent the sting and spread of mosquitoes near your home.
- Drain any standing water from garbage cans, gutters, pool covers, coolers, toys, flower pots or other containers.
- Cover your skin with shoes, socks, shoes, long pants and long sleeves when mosquitoes are active.
- Cover doors and windows with screens. Repair broken screen to keep mosquitoes out.
- Cover your skin and clothing with mosquito repellent. Effective mosquito repellents include DEET, picaridin, lemon eucalyptus oil and IR 3535.
- Cover children under 2 months with mosquito netting.
Protect yourself from mosquito bites and the diseases they may carry.
- Discard old tires, drums, bottles, cans, pots and pans, broken appliances and other items that aren't being used.
- Empty and clean birdbaths and pets’ water bowls at least once or twice a week.
- Protect boats and vehicles from rain with tarps that don’t accumulate water.
- Maintain the water balance (pool chemistry) of swimming pools. Empty plastic swimming pools when not in use.
Residential Property Inspections
Localized mosquito issues may require an inspector to visit your yard and adjacent properties to search for any containers that are holding water which provides a breeding ground for some types of mosquitoes.
When mosquito breeding is found, the containers are emptied, eliminating the source of the nuisance. Insecticide may be used to treat large containers, such as swimming pools that are found breeding mosquitoes. Yards are sprayed using portable spray equipment to kill adult mosquitoes.
The spray truck does little to control domestic mosquitoes and is not used unless migration of adult mosquitoes from the Everglades National Park or Biscayne National Park cause excessive numbers of mosquitoes in the populated areas.
A fixed-wing aircraft and a mosquito control helicopter are used during the summer months in the southwest area of the County. When large numbers of salt marsh mosquitoes migrate into the area from the Everglades National Park, Biscayne National Park and the Florida Keys, aerial spraying is used to spray large areas with heavy mosquito infestations.
Aerial spraying is highly effective, but costly. We use the aircraft only to spray large areas that have heavy infestations of mosquitoes. Aerial spraying is performed at dusk to coincide with the period of greatest mosquito activity.
Beekeepers, organic farm owners or butterfly gardeners can be added to the notification list prior to spraying. This list is also intended for those who have chemical sensitivities and other ailments as well.
Call 311 to request to be added to the list.
When localized concentrations of mosquitoes become a nuisance, truck spraying is used to kill adult mosquitoes on contact. A fine mist of concentrated insecticide, through a method known as Ultra Low Volume application (ULV), is dispersed. The faster the truck moves, the more insecticide is sprayed. The mist is effective for up to 300 feet down wind.
Mosquito control spray trucks begin spraying at dusk to coincide with peak mosquito activity. Spray trucks usually operate five evenings per week, Monday through Friday. Spray operations are extended in instances of severe mosquito annoyance, or when mosquito-transmitted disease occurs.
Mosquito spraying is not performed in evenings when there are unfavorable climatic conditions such as high winds, rain or cold temperatures.
Spraying under these conditions kills very few mosquitoes.
Spraying is not performed during the day for several reasons:
- Mosquitoes are not as active during the day as in the evening
- Mosquitoes must be actively flying to obtain effective control
- Beneficial insects, especially honeybees, are active during the daylight hours, and insecticides sprayed can kill them
- People are out during the day, and spraying may cause unneeded exposure to the insecticide
- Traffic congestion would make the operation of a spray truck difficult during business hours
- Thermal currents can cause the insecticide to rise or move in directions not conductive to effective control.
Insecticides used to control mosquitoes
The insecticides used are contact sprays which must contact the mosquito in order to kill it. The insecticides do not prevent or repel mosquitoes from an area. Adult mosquitoes that migrate into an area after spraying are not killed, and it may sometimes appear that the spraying was ineffective.
The insecticides used to control mosquitoes are non-persistent. They last only a short period of time, and are biodegraded into harmless byproducts. All insecticides used are EPA approved, and used in strict accordance with label instructions.
While time consuming and labor intensive, killing mosquito larvae prevents them from becoming flying, biting mosquitoes.
Larval control insecticides include:
- BTI (Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis) is applied in either liquid or granular form to areas of standing water with mosquito breeding. Bti, is a naturally occurring soil bacterium. The bacterium produces proteins in a crystalline form. When the mosquito larvae eat these crystals, the proteins attack their gut wall, killing the larvae. Bti has a highly specific mode of action, and is of minimal environmental concern. Bti is quickly biodegraded and leaves no residue.
- Bacillus sphaericus (Bs) is a common soil-inhabiting bacterium and is applied in either liquid or granular form to areas of standing water with mosquitoes breeding. The bacterium produces a protein toxin that may be used to control mosquito larvae. Bs is nontoxic to nontarget organisms.
- Methoprene (Altosid) is an insect growth regulator that is applied in liquid, granules, pellets, or briquets to areas of standing water with mosquito breeding. This material prevents the mosquito larvae from emerging as viable adult mosquitoes.
Adult mosquito control insecticides include:
• Bio-Mist 30+30 (Permethrin) is a synthetic version of Pyrethrin insecticide, derived from the Chrysanthemum. Rotating insecticides reduces the likelihood of insecticide resistance. • Naled (Dibrom Concentrate) is an oil-based organic phosphate insecticide used solely for aerial application. It is highly effective in controlling adult salt marsh mosquitoes. It is somewhat irritating if droplets get onto the skin or in the eye.
• Naled (Dibrom Concentrate) is an oil-based organic phosphate insecticide used solely for aerial application. It is highly effective in controlling adult salt marsh mosquitoes. It is somewhat irritating if droplets get onto the skin or in the eye.