‘They’re everywhere’: McClellanville seeing high numbers of mosquitoes

People who live in the McClellanville area say mosquitoes are becoming a real frustration as Charleston County works to get their volume under control.
Published: Oct. 17, 2022 at 3:43 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 17, 2022 at 6:53 PM EDT
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McCLELLANVILLE, S.C. (WCSC) - People who live in the McClellanville area say mosquitoes are becoming a real frustration as Charleston County works to get their volume under control.

Jon Loveland, the assistant manager for the Charleston County Mosquito Program, says they’re getting calls countywide, but McClellanville is the worst spot right now.

“As soon as you open the car doors it’s like 10 million of them,” Aziarae Green said. “They eat you into the car, they just eat you alive.”

Joe Blake has lived in McClellanville for 65 years. He said he’s never seen the mosquitoes this bad.

“I can’t get out to mow my yard,” Blake said. “My grandson couldn’t go to school this morning because the mosquitoes are so bad.”

Blake said he bought 10 cans of bug spray in two days just to come outside.

McClellanville resident John Kooper said the bugs are aggravating, but he also worries about the disease that the bugs can carry.

“I stay covered up and I spray what I’ve got exposed, hands, face, neck whatever,” Kooper said. “Put a hat on, beat them to death when I can and that’s basically all you can do.”

Loveland said they’re aware of the situation and put up an airplane Sunday morning to treat what they could, and they also had ground trucks in the area Sunday night spraying. He says they will be out again Monday night.

McClellanville is particularly challenging to treat because there are certain areas that are restricted and cannot be treated, like thousands of acres of protected wetlands, he said. They’re also restricted to using one product in the Francis Marion National Forest. Mosquitoes can build resistance to that.

Loveland said a lot of the issue stems from Hurricane Ian and a large amount of rainfall.

“Most of these mosquitoes we’re seeing in the northern part of the county are saltmarsh mosquitoes,” Loveland said. “So really the only thing they’re going to be able to do is wear long sleeves, try to avoid being outside at dusk and dawn and use a repellant with Deet in it.”

Charleston County residents can click here to request spraying or call 843-202-7880. Residents can also text “hello” to Citibot at 843-800-4121 and ask to request a mosquito control spray.