With floods ravaging South East Queensland, causing untold property damage, power outages and claiming the life of a man on the Sunshine Coast, clean-up operations are already underway. We shouldn’t neglect protecting our homes from the post-flood rise in insect populations. One way to do this is by installing retractable fly screens.

News agencies reported that torrential rain is expected to continue, together with already humid conditions, the ideal breeding ground for insects and in particular mosquitoes.

In the 24 hours up to 9am on Thursday, the northern Gold Coast has 100mm-200mm of rainfall. A further 50-100mm has fallen since 9am.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/13/queensland-flooding-in-the-southeast-as-north-braces-for-record-heatwave

According to The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) senior meteorologist, Shane Kennedy the area around the Oxenford Weir is of particular concern.

“By midday, the Coomera River had risen to 8.5 metres in that area.

That’s a good 2.5 metres above its highest flood level, which is six metres.”

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/13/queensland-flooding-in-the-southeast-as-north-braces-for-record-heatwave

Due to quick downpours and flash floods in the area, people had to be evacuated including residents of a nursing home at Mt Coolum.

In South East Queensland severe thunderstorm warnings were in place. There were also flood warnings at a number of locations. Residents have been dealing with power outages and submerged roads following torrential rains and flash flooding.

But with all the chaos, it’s important that we also consider how we’re going to deal with the aftermath of the flooding, including addressing the inevitable rise in mosquito populations due to the wet and warm conditions.

Meteorologists have forecasted heatwave conditions in the state’s far north, with temperatures expected to reach into the mid-40s.

Following flooding, mosquitoes will begin to breed in stagnant water, which will be more common after flood. The longer the water stands stagnant, the more mosquitoes.

While we can control the amount of stagnant water on our own properties to an extent, following a flood, we can’t be certain that all the stagnant pools of water around us are eliminated. The best we can do is ensure we are protected beforehand to deal with the inevitable onslaught of mosquitoes.

One of the most effective ways to protect your home is by ensuring large door and window openings are protected with retractable fly screens. If you already have fly screens in place, ensure that they are intact and in perfect working order.

Here’s a checklist to ensure you’re protected from insects following a flood,

  • Address all collections of stagnant water to prevent mosquitoes infesting your property. Check all puddles, muddy areas and other places where water may have accumulated such as trash cans, gutters, storage containers, tarps and walls on your property.
  • When outdoors, ensure you wear long sleeves and pants or utilise insect repellent, particularly around dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
  • Ensure your windows and doors are covered with retractable fly screens.

It’s important to keep in mind that some insects come in with the flood waters, so even getting rid of all stagnant water on your property may not be enough to keep them at bay. They may also come from neighbouring properties, or standing water sources out of your reach. That is why covering your door and window openings with retractable fly screens is crucial.

Given the forecasted hot conditions, temperatures are expected to reach into the mid-30s, having retractable fly screens installed will allow you to have doors and windows open to keep your home cool without allowing insects to swarm your home.