- Hurricane Ian hit Florida in late September causing massive flooding.
- The standing water from the flood led to hordes of mosquitoes, NBC News reported.
- The state alongside local officials is spending millions to curb the spread of disease.
State and local officials in Florida are spending millions trying to address a surge in mosquitoes after Hurricane Ian in an effort to curb the spread of disease, NBC News reported.
“The mosquitoes are out there, and they’re biting,” Eric Jackson, the deputy director of the Lee County Mosquito Control Division told NBC News. “It is just a constant effort to knock down as many of those flying, adult mosquitoes as fast as we can.”
Dozens of people died when the hurricane hit Florida in late September. Heavy rain caused major river flooding across Florida. The standing water from the flooding led to hordes of mosquitoes flying around, NBC News reported.
Those insects can spread diseases like West Nile virus and St. Louis encephalitis. The state alongside counties is investing millions into sing planes and helicopters to spray pesticides from the air above flood areas to kill off mosquitoes.
FOX13 reported that in Polk County Mosquito Control said they had 700 requests for mosquito control when they returned to their office following the storm. NBC News reported that in the week following the storm, Lee County, another area badly hit, saw a rise in the number of mosquitoes caught in traps. Over 107,000 mosquitoes were collected in the traps in the first 12 days of October compared to only nearly 34,000 in all of October 2021.
“Imagine a couple thousand coming at you. That’s the big concern after hurricanes and large flooding events,” Daniel Markowski, a technical adviser for the American Mosquito Control Association told NBC News. “The sheer number of mosquitoes can make any daily life activity horrendous.”