As fall turns to winter and the weather gets wetter, you may be
spending less time in your garden, but mosquitoes will be making
themselves right at home. In San Mateo County, our weather never
gets cold enough to completely stop mosquitoes from reproducing,
even on our chilliest days. Items that can hold rainwater
for more than a few days – everything from wheelbarrows and
wagons to plant saucers and kids’ toys – can quickly become
habitat for thousands of mosquito larvae.
In some parts of the country, the weather is getting cooler and
tick season is winding down. Here in San Mateo County, however,
tick season is just beginning. Ticks become abundant shortly
after the first rain of the season, and continue questing through
the winter and spring. Adult western blacklegged ticks, our local
Lyme disease vector, are most abundant December through May,
while adult Pacific coast ticks and American dog ticks are most
abundant in the spring and early summer.
As of November 1, 2019, there have been 215 dead birds reported
in San Mateo County. Of those, 53 have been suitable for testing
and all 53 have tested negative for West Nile virus (WNV). No
mosquito pools or sentinel chickens have tested positive for West
Nile virus in San Mateo County in 2019.
When the temperatures start to change and the nights become
colder, you may begin to notice six-legged visitors coming inside
your home. As we shutter our doors and windows to keep out the
cold, the humidity rises indoors. This elevated humidity
can attract insects and arthropods, including tiny insects called
Collembola, or springtails.