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Insect Identification

Resident assistance in monitoring vectors in our community is important. If you need insect identification, we will do what we can to assist you however, our priorities will remain mosquitoes, red imported fire ants, and other vectors that are impacting people. We may not be able to provide advice on solving problems outside of mosquitoes and vectors. This service is provided as time permits – other staff duties may take priority.

Identification may not be possible, especially if specimens are in poor condition. Phone calls and emails will be returned as soon as possible and may take a week or more to receive a response.

Submitting a specimen

  • Please enclose all specimens in a sealed container such as a Ziploc bag or small plastic container
  • When available, submit multiple specimens as this helps in proper identification
  • If mailing the samples, place in a hard-sided container. Insects in plastic bags in envelopes will be crushed in the mailing process.
  • Some insects can sting or bite, so always use caution when handling them
  • Please do not submit objects (such as articles of clothing, filters from air purifiers or vacuums, carpet, etc.) to be searched for insects.
  • We require that the resident place the insect or item in a container that can be sealed.
  • Specimens will not be returned.

Photographing specimen

If it is not possible to capture a specimen, identification may be possible with a photograph as long as it is high-quality resolution.

  •  We cannot identify insect bites.  
  • Some insects can sting or bite, so always use caution when handling them
  • Photos can be emailed to Jennifer.

 Ticks and Lyme Disease

Our arid desert in general is not a welcoming habitat for ticks and therefore, the District does not regularly monitor tick abundance or test for Lyme disease. Should you have questions regarding ticks or Lyme disease, visit the California Department of Public Health.

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