Mosquito Population Reduction

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mosquitoMosquitoes are spoilers.  They can destroy a pleasant evening in the backyard with family and friends. They are annoying and even worse, can cause deadly diseases. But with all the products out there advertised to control them, how do you know what actually works and is safe?

There are numerous species of mosquitoes, each with their own lifestyle. Many breed in water, but some actually reproduce in trees. Many like to feed during crepuscular hours, while some are hungry in the midday.  There are things you can do to eliminate and reduce the mosquito population in your home and backyard.  Drill holes in the bottom, not the sides, of any garbage or recycling containers stored outdoors. Holes on the sides still allow enough water to accumulate in the bottom for mosquitoes to breed. Keep gutters clean and unclogged. Be sure your downspouts drain properly, without leaving puddles in the drainage area. You may need to reroute your downspouts or add extensions to carry water away. Keep your pool chlorinated. Walk your property after a rain, and look for areas in the landscape that are not draining well. If you find puddles that remain for four or more days, redo the grading. Standing water is literally a breeding ground for many mosquitoes, so get rid of it. Even small catches like flower pots, birdbaths and clogged gutters can be trouble, so take a good look.

Put screens on your windows and make sure they do not have mosquito-sized holes in them. Make sure vents are covered. Do not give bugs easy passage into your home. Mosquitoes are attracted to dark colors so it is advisable to wear light colored clothing. The newer models of bug zappers emit CO2 as an attractant and are known to be more effective than the older versions. Mosquitoes do not like moving air.  Fans will help to push the pesky little bugs away from family fun in the backyard. There are many good varieties of natural repellents. They are available now from natural products companies, with formulas that are free of questionable DEET, and include soothing herbs.

Nothing takes the fun out of an evening barbecue outdoors like a bunch of bloodthirsty mosquitoes. In addition to inflicting a painful bite, mosquitoes can transmit diseases. You can keep your local mosquito population under control by limiting their habitat on your property, and avoid their annoying bites by using the right barriers and repellents.

Source: “8 Natural Ways to Keep Mosquitoes at Bay.” The Daily Green. Web. 04 June 2013.

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