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Rains May Increase Mosquitoes and Garden Pests

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Unwanted guests in your garden could be more than a minor annoyance; these pests can spread disease and damage plants.

“As we head into spring, we’ll see more pests emerging from their winter habitats to feed on the increased plant growth caused by the rain.  We could also see more mosquitoes breeding in the standing water around the yard,” said County Entomologist David Kellum.

Common backyard pests in our region include snails, Argentine ants, honeybees, aphids and caterpillars.  Residents are encouraged to submit unfamiliar insects to the Department of Agriculture, Weights and Measures.  For more information, call (858) 694-8988.

Plant-damaging bugs have led to three quarantines in the county: the diaprepes root weevil in the North County, the Mediterranean fruit fly in El Cajon, and the Asian citrus psyllid in areas of the county south of Highway 78.

The gold-spotted oak borer is suspected of damaging thousands of oak trees in eastern areas of the county.  Although a quarantine is not in effect, the public is asked not to transport firewood, where the pest could be hiding.

Residents are also urged to get rid of standing water around the yard where mosquitoes can breed and to report potential mosquito-breeding sites to the County Department of Environmental Health.  Mosquitoes can spread disease, including West Nile virus.  A record-number of human West Nile virus cases was reported in the county last year.

Slideshow: Garden Pests

Find out more about West Nile virus at

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