Picnics and outdoor grilling traditionally mark each Memorial Day, but the holiday that signals the near end of spring and start of summer also is the beginning of mosquito season. Summer barbecues at apartment patios and evening walks can be disrupted or ended by the sting of one backyard pest that has generated much attention lately.
Last year was the second-worst outbreak of West Nile virus, which is transmitted to humans by the bites of infected mosquitoes. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), there were 5,674 cases – including a record 286 deaths – reported in the lower 48 states, District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Texas reported one-third of the outbreaks and as many deaths.
This year could be just as bad, depending on weather conditions. But apartments now have a new weapon in their arsenal to fight mosquitoes, and deployment is as easy as turning on the irrigation system.