With summer upon us, mosquitoes are out in full force, especially with all this rain we have been seeing this spring. Mosquitos can turn a bonfire or barbecue into a nightmare. Luckily, there are some effective ways to control mosquitoes in your yard. Our guide to summer mosquito control can help you get the most out of your yard this summer.
Understand Their Life Cycle
Mosquitoes have an interesting life cycle. A female mosquito lays clutches of eggs in pools of standing water. These clutches can contain up to 300 eggs and she can lay a clutch every few days. In the fall, some eggs overwinter and hatch as soon as warm temperatures return. Because the females need the protein found in blood in order to produce her eggs, only female mosquitoes bite. Males live short lives with their only purpose being to breed and then die.
After the eggs hatch, the larvae spend the first five days of their life swimming in the water and feeding on organic matter. After five days, they develop into pupae which then turn into adult mosquitoes within 2-3 days.
How Do Mosquitoes Find Us?
Mosquitos are well equipped to seek out their prey. We can try to cover ourselves with clothes and scents, but mosquitos have more than a few ways to detect where their next meal is.
- Body Heat: Mosquitos can hunt by sensing our body heat. Not much you can do about that.
- Dark Clothing: Dark clothing retains more heat, making you much easier to spot than someone in lighter clothes.
- Carbon Dioxide: Mosquitoes are equipped with receptors that can detect the CO2 in our breath.
- Scents: Mosquitoes are attracted to certain scents like sweat, lotions, and perfumes.
Prevent Mosquitoes Before They Become an Issue
Mosquitos are ruthlessly annoying creatures and carry a medley of dangerous diseases, but there are steps you can take to prevent them and bring their populations down in your yard.
Eliminate Standing Water
The most effective way to control mosquitoes is to disrupt their life-cycles by eliminating standing water. While this seems easy, most people tend to overlook the vast number of objects in your yard that can retain water after it rains. Pay special attention to your gutters, rain barrels, flower pots, buckets, rotting stumps, and birdbaths.
Defend Your Water Features
For water features that you don’t want to eliminate, there are alternative options.
- Fish: Add fish and frogs to your ponds to feed on mosquito larvae.
- Chlorine: Unchlorinated pools can turn into massive mosquito breeding areas.
- Larvicide: For features such as fountains, animal waterers, and birdbaths, there are larvicide pellets that you can use to keep larvae out of water for up to a month.
Introduce Mosquito-Eating Predators
Mosquitos may enjoy feeding on us but there are animals out there that love to feed on mosquitoes. Bats and swallows are the number one mosquito hunters around and if you can entice them to make a home in your yard then you will have your own anti-mosquito security system. Try putting up some bat houses and birdhouses to attract these mosquito-eaters, they can help with your summer mosquito control.
Call the Professionals
Battling mosquitoes can seem like a daunting task. At Land-Art we offer effective mosquito control and pest control solutions. First, we identify the areas of mosquito activity and then we spray a barrier around your property to stop mosquitos and other insects such as spiders, stink bugs, fleas, and ticks.