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Administration Finance & Focus

Facilities services

New strategy targets pesky mosquitoes across campus

By Jacquie Vargas


It’s that time of year again when mosquitos seem to be everywhere. The University of Houston plans to use a new comprehensive treatment process to control the mosquito population on campus. The main strategy is to treat areas where mosquitos breed to kill them before they mature into adults.

Facilities Services is working with the campus pest control provider, who will use a larvicide to treat areas of standing water. This is more effective than the fogging that has traditionally been used.

“Larvicides are products used to kill immature mosquitoes before they become adults. Larvicides are applied directly to water sources that hold mosquito eggs, larvae or pupae. When used well, larvicides can help to reduce the overall mosquito burden by limiting the number of new mosquitoes that are produced,” according to the Center for Diseases Control and Prevention.

Standing water from the recent rains provide a ready source for mosquitos to reproduce in force.

“The pest control provider will treat these areas of standing water and also treat landscape beds as well. This is because mosquitos hide inside and under the plants during the day,” stated Facilities Services Assistant Director Roger Warner.

According to the Houston Chronicle, the city already has logged its first case of West Nile virus this year, even though the season usually peaks in August. So these early steps by Facilities Services are important to help protect the campus community.

The Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services office recommends the following procedures to limit exposure to mosquitoes that may carry the West Nile virus:

  • Limit time outside at dusk and dawn.
  • Dress in long-sleeved shirts/pants, light-colored and loose clothing.
  • Apply insect repellent that contains DEET, Picaridin, or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus.
  • Drain standing water from pots, containers, water dishes or bird baths.

Anyone who has questions can contact Warner at 713-743-9671 or, or the Facilities Service Center at FIXIT, 713-743-4948.

The Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services website contains updated maps showing confirmed cases, treatment schedules and strategies for avoiding exposure to West Nile virus, like the “Fight the Bite with 4’D’s” campaign, as well as other useful information.