When you are trying to enjoy a relaxing evening in your backyard, or even in your home, but mosquitoes keep intruding, this can be an unbearable nuisance.
Mosquitoes will irritate you in many ways, most notably by biting you. While their bites may irritate your skin, they can pose much greater risks than redness and itchiness, as mosquitoes can be carriers of serious viruses such as West Nile.
So, as you go out and enjoy the beautiful fall weather, how can you limit the mosquitoes that call your yard home? There are a few tips you can use to reduce the number of these outdoor pests encroaching on your property this year.
Take Away Their Home: Eliminate All Standing Water
The most effective way to reduce the mosquito population around your home is to eliminate their habitats. Mosquitoes need standing water in order to lay their eggs and thrive in an area. Therefore, eliminate the standing water and you will make the area unlivable for mosquitoes.
This is easier said than done because the standing water can be incredibly shallow and still be enough for a mosquito. You sometimes have to be very creative and perceptive to spot all of the areas that could become breeding grounds.
Here are some of the most common ways to reduce the amount of standing water on your property:
- Correct any drainage problems within your gutter system or in your yard so that puddles do not form.
- Drill holes in the bottom of trash and recycling bins so that water will not pool at the bottom.
- Regularly change the water in bird baths so that it does not stand stagnant for too long.
- Watch out for any small containers around your property, including buckets, bottles, cans or planters that could be collecting water.
- Keep your lawn mowed and weedy areas under control because areas of dense foliage can trap enough water for mosquitoes to lay eggs.
What if You Have A Pool or Pond?
Some homes will purposefully have some source of standing water, such as a pool or a fountain, or a natural source like a pond nearby. These sources of water you either cannot or do not want to eliminate. You must take a different offensive approach.
One possible solution is to add Bacillus thuringiensis or Bt to the water. Bt is a naturally occurring bacterium that is commonly used as an insecticide, but it is not harmful to people or animals. It could be added to the pools, fountains or ponds on the property to eliminate the mosquito eggs.
Another strategy which does not involve the use of chemicals is to use top-feeding minnows called mosquito fish. Basically, using this strategy, you are simply introducing a natural predator of the mosquito.
Protecting Yourself from Mosquitoes
It is important to note that all of these strategies will take time to show results. In the meantime, you must vigilantly protect yourself from mosquitoes, especially since these insects could be carrying the West Nile Virus or other dangerous viruses.
Ways to Stay Protected from Mosquito Bites Include:
- Reduce the amount of exposed skin. Bundle up this fall. You can further protect yourself by tucking your shirt into your pants and your pants into your socks.
- Limit your time outdoors during dawn and dusk, when mosquitos are most active.
- Use mosquito netting to keep the mosquitoes out of your home, sunrooms, decks or any other living areas.
For more help controlling mosquitoes in Louisiana or the Mississippi Gulf Coast, contact Fischer Environmental today!
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