Mosquitoes have been particularly irritating in the Foothills so far this summer.

That's due, no doubt, to the excessive rainfall in the area in the past few weeks.

It's created ample breeding ground for the pests, with plenty of still water pooled in all sorts of nooks and crannies.

The Town of Okotoks takes measures of its own to control the mosquito population, taking samples of mosquito larvae as part of a monitoring program.

Parks Manager Christa Michailuck says they also treat shallow bodies of water.

"What we've found is that shallow standing water and in roadside ditches and things are where we get our biggest quantity of mosquito larvae, and yes, we use a treatment in those waters. The product is actually the dead spores of a natural bacterium that's released into the water and it kills the larvae and only the larvae, so it's safe for other aquatic life."

For those planning backyard barbecues, Michailuck says there are measures locals can take too.

"It's really important for residents to inspect their yards for any standing water. It could be plant trays, kids' toys like trucks and things. They should also make sure that, if they're using rain barrels, they have a little screen cover where the water goes in so that mosquitoes can't start reproducing in there. SO just go around your yard and dump out any standing water, that'd really help the community if everybody could do that."

She says the town is often asked about storm ponds and if they contribute to local mosquito populations.

"We only have one pond that has a shallow edge that we get some larvae in, and we do the treatment there. All the rest of the ponds are deep enough and the water's moving enough with the stormwater coming in that they don't support mosquito populations."

Another natural form of mosquito control is present in the town.

"Bats are one of the best mosquito eaters there are, they're great for mosquito patrol. So if you do have bats that have taken up residence in your backyard patio umbrella or places like that, if they're not bothering you, if you could let them be, that's great for mosquito control as well. Of course, you could mount a bat box on your home, they need to be about eight feet off the ground with a clear flight path so that bats can come and go easily."