Mosquitoes are one of summer’s most irritating and pesky pests, and they can be difficult to get rid of if the proper precautions are not followed. From keeping your grass trimmed, planting certain plants, setting traps and attracting natural predators, there are several ways to reduce or eliminate the threat of mosquitoes.
It’s important to control the mosquito population, especially in areas where children and adults socialize, because they can carry and spread harmful diseases. Below are five tips for eliminating mosquitoes.
1. Eliminate Standing Water
An easy way to reduce the threat of mosquitoes is to eliminate their breeding ground – standing water. Mosquito eggs hatch in five days and female mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water, such as puddles, buckets, water bowls, birdbaths, etc. Easy ways to rid the yard of mosquitoes are to refresh any birdbath water every few days, check that potted plants are draining properly and regularly dump and add new water to outdoor pet bowls. Stagnant water can also be found in clogged gutters, buckets and toys left sitting outside, logs and tree stumps, baby and pet pools, and an over-watered lawn. All these items and areas are common breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Keeping the yard picked up can make a drastic difference in the mosquito population.
1-B. Pools and Ponds
Homeowners or businesses with a pool, pond or other water feature cannot easily remove their standing water, but there are still ways for reducing the threat of mosquitoes in and around the water. Covering the swimming pool at night can drastically reduce the ability for mosquitoes to lay eggs in the pool, and a good water filter or fountain that constantly keeps water moving will discourage mosquitoes from laying eggs in the water. Trained professionals such as United Pest & Turf Control can spray for mosquitoes around pools and water features.
2. Plant Deterrents
Certain plants have a reputation for repelling mosquitoes and may work well for people with a green thumb for gardening. Basil, Catnip, Citronella, Garlic, Geraniums, Lavender, Lemon balm, Lemongrass, Marigolds, Pennyroyal, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage and Tulsi are common plants that may reduce mosquitoes.
3. Mosquito Traps
Many homeowners have barbecues and parties throughout the summer and mosquitoes can be unwelcome guests. Mosquito traps work well for outdoor parties and can be placed on the porch or patio. It’s important to remember to follow the directions on the trap and change it regularly.
4. Candles, Lanterns and Fans
Citronella candles are commonly used to detract mosquitoes and can be effective in areas with little air movement, camping areas, large patios, etc. The same is true with lanterns that diffuse essential oils known to repel these pests. Common oils include: Citronella, Clove, Cedarwood, Lavender, Eucalyptus, Peppermint, Rosemary, Lemongrass and Geraniol.
A common fan is also effective at deterring mosquitoes. The pests cannot fly against the a fan’s air flow.
5. Attract Natural Predators
Home and business owners with larger properties may wish to consider attracting natural predators to help control mosquitoes. Bats and several bird species, such as songbirds, Swallows and Purple Martins are excellent mosquito hunters. However, sometimes attracting animals to control a pest problem can be tricky.
Goldfish, koi and red-eared turtles are good at eating mosquito larvae, and can be useful in ponds or other outdoor water features.
If you’ve tried to eliminate mosquitoes around your home without success, please contact United Pest & Turf Control to have one of our trained and experienced technicians review the problem and offer a sensible solution.