Mosquito season is here. People in the United States are extra cautious among all the news that the Zika virus is continuing to spread throughout the Americas (in addition to the other mosquito-borne diseases to worry about.) But, you don’t have to run to the house every time the mosquitoes come out. All you need to do is to figure out how you are inviting mosquitoes into your backyard for a little family feast. With a little preventive maintenance and yard monitoring, you can give those uninvited guests their eviction notice.
You might think your yard is safe from mosquitoes because there’s no obvious sign of standing water. But, a mosquito only needs a tiny bottle cap-size pool of water to lay up to two hundred eggs. So, removing standing water is critical. Check your yard for even the smallest containers of water, wash and dry them. Items that contain stagnant water might include plant saucers, dog bowls, and bird baths. If needed fill them with fresh water.
Your Yard Junk (er, Treasures?)
You might be hosting a mosquito resort in your own back yard. Is your yard full of items that could unwittingly be holding water, like tires (even a tire swing), grills, and tarps? If your yard is full of items you don’t need that are holding water, get rid of them. Or, drill a hole in the bottom if possible so the water can leak out. Kid’s toys, buckets, wading pools, and anything else that holds water but you don’t want to throw out should be flipped over when not in use so they don’t fill with water. Also, clean your gutters so the water can drain freely. If you’re using a tarp to cover a pile of firewood, a speedboat, your grill, or any other large items, make sure it’s pulled tight. Otherwise, rainwater pools in the folds and the low spots. If the tarp can’t be pulled tight, remove it so the water drains.
Like butterflies, bees and many other insects, all male and female mosquitoes have a nutritional need for sugar, which can be supplied by the nectar of flowering plants. They also enjoy the shade and moisture that tall grasses, shrubs, bushes, and trees provide. Reduce the amount of uninvited company by keeping brush trimmed back around your yard and house and your grass cut short. And remember, stagnant water that can accumulate in organic material, like leave piles, can give mosquitoes everything they need to breed and survive.
Relying on False Claims
There is a lot of information on how to repel mosquitoes from your yard circulating through the internet. And we have addressed several of these myths specifically, but there are so many out there it’s hard to tackle them all. The most important thing you can do to protect your family and yard from mosquitoes is research. Check out reputable sites like the EPA. And inquire about treatments before blindly believing in them. Our own Mosquito Shield® is a professionally applied mosquito spray that is proven to kill and repel mosquitoes and ticks. But, don’t take our word for it. Check out our reviews on Facebook from our happy mosquito-free customers!
What else can you do?
One great way to keep mosquitoes from invading your territory is to get your neighbors involved. Successful mosquito control is achieved when everyone pitches in. Therefore, you should encourage your neighbors to also adopt mosquito control habits to keep the community safe. We love helping communities say no to ticks and mosquitoes this year in their neighborhood. Contact us to see how you could save some money with your neighbors with our Street Shield Program.