Georgia Department of Agriculture

As the floodwaters recede in Georgia, flooded areas may see more pests


Georgia Department of Agriculture
Gary W. Black, Commissioner
19 Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. SW
Atlanta, GA 30334

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Press Release
Tuesday, November 1, 2016
Office of Communications

As the floodwaters recede in Georgia, flooded areas may see more pests due to the moisture and population displacement.

The Georgia Department of Agriculture has identified the following pests that are of the utmost concern:

Mosquitoes: Standing water is a major issue in the aftermath of a flood, as it provides the ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes. Residents should apply an insect repellant containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535 or oil of lemon eucalyptus when spending time outdoors to minimize the chance of being bit by a mosquito.

Flies: Filth flies are attracted to spoiled food items and overflowing sewage, both of which are common in the wake of a flood. This type of fly often lays its eggs in rotting organic material. Sanitation is crucial to prevent a fly infestation in the home.

Rodents: Rising waters force rodents nesting in sewer systems to seek refuge on higher ground. The delay in garbage pickup that many areas might experience from the flooding can attract rodents to the property. Homeowners should store trash in sealed plastic receptacles until clean-up is finished.

Termites: Any wood that may have come in contact with water will be attractive to termites. Homeowners in flooded areas should contact a licensed pest control professional to inspect their properties for signs of termite protection damage.

Ants: Red imported fire ants form a ball that acts as a raft to survive floodwaters. People should be aware of these floating islands to avoid accidentally disturbing a nest, which could result in painful stings.

Consumers are urged to only seek advice and use licensed professional pest control companies. Consumers can find a list of all licensed professional pest management companies by visiting / or by contacting the Structural Pest Section at (404) 656-3641.

The Georgia Department of Agriculture is responsible for licensing the professional pest management companies who perform pest control. Consumers can learn more about the Department’s Structural Pest Section by visiting


About the GDA The Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA) is the voice of the state’s agriculture community. The department's mission is to provide excellence in services and regulatory functions, to protect and promote agriculture and consumer interests, and to ensure an abundance of safe food and fiber for Georgia, America, and the world by using state-of-the-art technology and a professional workforce. For more information, visit


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