Los Angeles County West Vector & Vector-Borne Disease Control District



Mosquitofish, (Gambusia affinis) are native to the southern and eastern parts of the United States and were first introduced to California in 1922 for mosquito control.  Instead of using chemicals to control mosquitoes, mosquitofish are an attractive and effective alternative. 


It is against California Department of Fish and Game regulations for private citizens to plant mosquitofish in waters of the State without a permit. (Title 14 CCR, Fish and Game Code, Section 1.63, Section 6400, and Section 238.5)

How to Obtain Mosquitofish

Mosquitofish are provided free of charge to residents of our District to place in artificial bodies of water on their property (i.e. ponds and fountains).


Come to our office

Fish can be picked up during normal business hours Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 3pm. The District is located at 6750 Centinela Avenue, Culver City, CA 90230.



Characteristics of Mosquitofish

Breeding Behavior

Do not lay eggs; give birth to well developed, active young
50-100 young per brood
Breed throughout the summer when mosquitoes are most active

Can eat up to 100 larvae per day
Do not require feeding if natural food (larvae, bacteria, algae, etc.) is present

  Fish food or crushed dog food may be used to feed fish for a short time if natural food is scarce (i.e. in the winter or in newly constructed or recently cleaned ponds). Fish may not eat mosquito larvae if overfed.

Avoid using chlorine and other chemicals to clean the pond


Where to Stock Mosquitofish

Suitable for man-made, permanent sources of water

Ornamental ponds

Unmaintained swimming pools


Water Gardens

Animal water troughs


Mosquitofish should never be placed in any natural habitat such as lakes, streams, rivers, or creeks. Their introduction into certain natural habitats may disrupt the existing ecological balance.


Living with Other Fish


Compatible organisms

Goldfish, Koi, and Carp

Non-compatible organisms

Bass, Perch, Bluegill, Catfish, Frogs, Turtles, and Crayfish


Mosquitofish may need hiding places like rocks and vegetation if living with larger fish