The Ultimate Mosquito Guide: Everything You Need To Know About Mosquitos & How To Get Rid Of Them
Mosquitoes are easily labeled as nuisance pests to many residents. Not only are they annoying, but they are among the most dangerous creatures on earth. The diseases these little bugs spread can cause millions of deaths annually. The most well-known of these is malaria. Althouh malaria is a greater threat in other parts of the world, there are still other pathogens to keep in mind that mosquitoes can carry. With Scott’s Turf and Pest Services, the pest control experts, here is a quick look at everything you need to know about mosquito control.
Why Is Mosquito Control Important?
Mosquito control is extremely important because of its ability to quickly transmit dangerous illnesses. Mosquitoes have ideal anatomical and behavioral qualities for transmitting deadly diseases. They pick up various viruses from infected animals and can transmit disease to a human with just one bite.
Can I Get Malaria From Mosquitos In The United States?
Yes, Malaria is still a concern, even in the United States. Malaria is a deadly disease that has adverse economic impacts globally. The female anopheles mosquito is best known for causing malaria.
According to the World Health Organization, there were approximately 228 million malaria cases worldwide in 2018, and the rate of infection continues to rise. According to the CDC: “Local US mosquito-borne spread has resulted in more than 150 locally acquired cases and more than 60 limited outbreaks in the United States over the past 50 years. In addition, more than 2,000 cases of malaria are reported annually in the United States, with most cases occurring in returned travelers.” Given the effect of the mosquito disease, everyone has a responsibility to control the malaria vectors.
What Mosquito-Borne Illness Can I Get?
Some common mosquito-borne diseases you can get include: West Nile Virus, Chikungunya Virus, and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). These are all carried by mosquitoes in US territory.
The most common ones in North Carolina are EEE and Chikungunya
- Symptoms and Treatment for EEE: While the EEE virus is rarer among humans, NC residents are still at risk. The majority of the cases occur on the Atlantic Coast of the United States every year. EEE is one of the most severe mosquito-transmitted diseases, showing a 33% mortality rate and significant brain damage in most survivors. Most victims experience headaches, fever, chills, and nausea upon onset. There is no medical treatment for the EEE virus at this time, and the best protection is prevention.
- Symptoms and Treatment for Chikungunya: Chikungunya Virus is characterized by fever, joint pain, and, sometimes, muscle pain, swelling, and rash. Currently, there is no vaccine available to prevent the virus and also no medicine to treat infections. According to the CDC, the best way to protect yourself from this disease is to prevent it entirely.
How To Eliminate The Risk Of Mosquitos
The reality of the threat mosquitoes can pose to you can cause fear. However, a few simple steps can bring you and your loved ones to a much greater level of protection from these threatening viruses. Of course, if you are engaging in an outdoor activity – especially near water – for extended periods of time, wear protective clothing and apply safe insect repellent. For homeowners, it is ideal to keep your place of residence as safe as possible. This can be done with a strategic, cyclic series of treatments from skilled professionals.
Mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant water. After about three days, the eggs hatch. The larvae mature within 12 days and begin to fly. Given that a single female mosquito can lay up to 400 eggs within two weeks, you may have no better way to control their population than to destroy the breeding sites.
Even though the other methods are often effective at reducing mosquitoes, they cannot eliminate them. But you can use natural mosquito repellents. Some are designed for the yard and others for the skin. Their scent confuses mosquitoes and makes it hard for them to find you and your loved ones.
Many animals, such as bats and swallows, feed on mosquitoes. Increase their number to make your work easier. For example, you can install bat shelters to attract these predators to your home.
For you to successfully control mosquitoes around your home, you need the support of other members of the public. According to the American Mosquito Control Association, the mosquito control effort is divided into public and individual. This means that everyone has a role to play. Mosquitoes can fly miles from their breeding sites. So, by getting your neighbors evolved in eliminating them, you are assured of a higher degree of success.
What Are Common Mosquito Breeding Sites?
Some of the breeding sites you should consider doing away with are old tires, containers, tree holes, clogged rain gutters, discarded cans, and unused floor drains like those located in laundry rooms or basements. Make sure drips are checked at the bottom of dehumidifiers, refrigerators, and air conditioners.
What Is The Best Way To Control Mosquitos?
The best way to get rid of mosquitos from your property is to kill mosquito larvae. If you cannot destroy all the breeding sites for any reason, kill the larvae. In fact, killing mosquito larvae is the best way to gain control back in your yard. This is when they are most vulnerable and not able to fly away. Some of the best ways to do this are to change pooled water every week, remove algae from ponds, and utilize insecticides.
How Do I Get Rid Of Mosquito Larvae?
If you want to attempt some DIY methods for mosquito larvae control there are a few things you can try:
- Dump out standing water: If you find something in your yard that has a pool of stagnant water with eggs or mosquito larvae in it, you can just dump out the stagnant water. They need water, so dumping them onto dry land will kill them.
- Dish soap, apple cider vinegar, and oil: If you are desperate to try a DIY method, you can use one of these three solutions. Although keep in mind that these are not guaranteed to be effective. Some swear by these solutions, but it may be just as easy to contact an extermination company to take care of the situation without error.
- Bleach: This is not suggested as it’s toxic to the environment around the treated location. It will kill larvae, but it will most likely kill all the life around it as well.
What Do Mosquito Larvae Look Like?
Mosquito larvae look like tiny, cylindrical white worms that dangle from the surface of the water, whipping themselves around in search of food. They are often called “wrigglers” as a result. Mosquito larvae in water can be difficult to see at times as they will swim around collecting food. The larvae only stick their tail end out of the water to breathe every so often. A telltale sign of a mosquito breeding ground is the presence of a mosquito’s egg raft. These collections mean that there are mosquito larvae in the area or there will be when the eggs hatch.
What Are The Best Ways To Protect Your Home Against Mosquitos?
The next step in your mosquito journey is learning how to prevent mosquitoes from returning to lay eggs once you have removed the common places mosquitoes rest. There are many options for DIY pest control, but it is important to note that the most successful treatment plan to protect your home includes having professional pest control services performed on a regular basis. Most general pest control companies will offer a free inspection to identify what treatment you need, but below are a few things you can do in the meantime to fight adult mosquitoes from interrupting your outdoor activities.
Utilize Candles Made With Repellant
Everyone loves a good candle to add to their collection, but did you know there are candles to help keep mosquitoes away from your patio and porch to protect your family while they are outside? By lighting candles or lanterns that contain one or more essential oils known to repel mosquitoes, you can drastically lower your chance of receiving a mosquito bite. These oils to look for in your candles include:
It should be known that Mosquito-repelling candles work best in smaller areas without a lot of air movement so the oils can be effective.
Plant Mosquito-repelling Plants Around Your Property
Similar to the aromas of the candles, you can find similar potent fragrances and essential oils in some plants, such as lavender and marigolds that naturally repel mosquitoes. So if you are someone who enjoys spending time outdoors on your deck or patio, try potting up a few of these plants and set them around the perimeter to naturally help keep mosquitoes away. Some other mosquito-repelling plants include:
- Citronella (and other scented geraniums)
- Bee balm
Set Up Mosquito Traps
Another great option to help create a barrier around your home is to set up mosquito traps on your porch or patio. However, it’s important to make sure you change the traps regularly. Especially if you’re having an outdoor party, traps can be an effective way to protect your guests from mosquitoes, especially when paired with other mosquito controls and repellent products.
Use Fans Even Outdoors
Sometimes candles, traps, and plants are not quite effective enough. So if possible it is a great idea to pair your other treatment plan ideas with some type of fan to keep the air moving which can keep mosquitoes from having a space to land.
Get Rid Of Mosquitos On Your Property Today!
Approaching a mosquito swarm without professional help is dangerous and can lead to unnecessary aggravation of the pests encouraging them to bite. Since mosquito bites are not only extremely uncomfortable but possibly fatal the importance of proper pest control is imperative. This is why our team at Scotts Tuft and Pest Services is always here to solve all your pest control-related problems.
Mosquito season lasts from late spring to early fall
While a mosquito on average will only live about 2-3 weeks unharmed, it is their ability to quickly multiply and their dangerous bite that makes them a cause for concern.
It is often misunderstood that after each bite the mosquito will die, but they in fact can cause harm to multiple people through repetitive bites in a matter of minutes. The only sure way to prevent mosquito bites in the immediate moment is by giving them a good ole smack.
Now you may be wondering why mosquitoes feel the need to bite you. The simple answer is they need blood to reproduce. Female mosquitos are known as consummate blood feeders and depend on the ability to bite humans or animals for the proteins and iron in our blood needed for the production, development, and maturing of their eggs.