47 out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia reported West Nile virus infections in 2017.
Mosquitos are not just a nuisance but also a serious health risk. The West Nile virus, which is the most prevalent mosquito-borne illness in the United States, has been a problem since 1999.
Come 2017 and the Zika virus created a panic which was fueled by the fact that not many people knew how to protect themselves from it.
To beat back the Florida mosquito wave during its peak season time, you need to control your environment. Keep reading for tips on how you can protect yourself from mosquitoes when their season arrives.
Get Rid of Stagnant Water
Mosquitoes lay their eggs in and around standing water bodies. Female mosquitoes especially love to lay their eggs in water that collects in man-made containers.
The favorite spot for the mosquito to place its eggs is on the walls of containers that water has collected in. These eggs will stick to the containers as if held by glue until they are scraped off.
Once the water surrounding the eggs dries out, they can still survive up to eight months. If it rains or water happens to cover the eggs, they will hatch and grow into adults in a span of just seven days.
If you want to ready yourself for the swarm of approaching mosquitos in Florida during mosquito season you need to proactively identify ways to prepare yourself.
Whenever you notice pests, you typically take decisive action to keep them out of your home. The same goes for mosquitoes.
The best way to fight mosquito larvae is to prevent mosquitoes from laying their eggs in the first place. Once every seven days you should scrub, empty, turn over, or throw out containers that hold water.
Examples of containers that you should inspect for standing water include vases, buckets, trash cans, rain barrels, flower pot saucers, among others.
If you must store water, ensure that you cover the containers where the water will collect to prevent mosquitoes from laying their eggs.
As part of dealing with standing water, every swimming pool owner should cover their pool. In case any water collects on the pool cover you should get rid of it too.
Use Natural Mosquito Predators
In the natural food cycle, mosquitoes are tasty treats for various prey like birds, fish, frogs, and dragonflies.
If you have a pond in your backyard in Florida, you can add a few frogs or fish to help you fight any mosquitoes breeding in the water.
One of the most effective natural mosquito predators is the mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis). It is so effective that several mosquito control districts around the country employ it as a means of beating back the pest during peak season.
Dragonflies do feed on mosquitoes in passing, but it is when they are in their aquatic larval stage that they can carry out the most damage.
At this stage, dragonflies feed heavily on mosquito larvae. Since dragonflies can stay at their larval stage for up to six years, you can employ them over a long period when they are in their most potent state.
Clear the Gutters
When leaves and debris collect in your gutters, they can get clogged. A clogged gutter is a haven for mosquitoes to breed in as it traps incoming water which the mosquitoes will lay their eggs in.
Use a gutter scoop to clear out any accumulated leaves or debris into a garbage bag or pail. Do not forget to check your gutters every week, especially during the rainy season.
When you want to let fresh air circulate indoors, you need to be mindful of the fact that if you are not careful you could let mosquitoes in as well.
To avoid such a scenario you need to use insect-proof screens. Install mesh screens on all your windows and doors to allow that breeze without inviting mosquitoes.
Since the gaps in the mesh wire are too tiny for mosquitoes to fly through, they will have no access to your home.
Don’t forget to use a screen in your porch as well.
Once you have installed screens at the necessary points you should inspect their edges for any breaks. Repair any damage to the screen that might let in mosquitoes using a patching kit.
Maintain Your Yard
Mosquitoes favor cool spots found in the shade. Therefore, if your yard is overgrown you may be providing an attractive spot for them to rest in.
Cut back any overgrown trees or tall grass that might offer hiding spaces for mosquitoes.
Another yard issue you should address is dipping in your lawn. If you do not get rid of any dips, they will collect water from sprinklers or rain and encourage mosquito breeding.
Go ahead and fill any uneven terrain or divots on your lawn with topsoil and then plant grass seed.
Use Plants That Can Deter Mosquitoes
As unlikely as it may sound, there are certain plants that mosquitoes do not like. These tend to be those with strong fragrances.
You can, therefore, take advantage of this fact and introduce these plants into your home.
Rosemary is an example of a plant that will keep mosquitoes away on top of it serving you as a fresh ingredient for your meals.
Citronella, though most popular in candle form, is a grass that keeps mosquitoes at bay. If you want brightly colored flowers that have a strong scent to drives mosquitoes away, pick up some Marigolds.
While home solutions are useful you need to consult a professional to inspect your property and identify any problem areas you may have missed.
Once they perform the inspection, the professional will advise you on what to do to manage the mosquito population until the next visit.
You should always schedule regular visits with the professional to consistently fend off mosquitoes.
Protect Yourself from the Florida Mosquito Attack
Mosquitoes pose a problem across the nation because every bite has the potential to transmit viruses. The Florida mosquito season is notorious for leaving casualties in its wake. You, therefore, have to protect yourself to avoid infection.
Brantley Termite & Pest Control has served a long list of clients, helping them get rid of their pest problem. Contact us today for exceptional and affordable pest control services.