Mosquitoes - a few facts
There are more than 2000 species of mosquitoes worldwide but only a few of them are equipped to carry viruses which can infect humans (or animals). Only the female mosquitoes drink blood. After a blood meal, she can then go on to lay a couple of hundred eggs. She will lay her eggs in pools of stagnant water (pot saucers with water are the ideal spot or any leftover puddle will do for her, even the dog's water bowl or your bird bath). The eggs take a while to hatch (a few weeks), the little wrigglers then develop rapidly in the next 2-3 days and become adult mosquitoes themselves. Mosquitoes track down their potential prey by tiny hairs on their antennae which have the ability to detect movement, heat, carbon dioxide levels and moisture.
Mosquito control - the different approaches
You need to approach mosquito control from various angles.
- Reduce the numbers by stopping water from pooling anywhere in your garden - take special note of the following
- pool covers - if you use these, remember to get rid of those pockets of stagnant water.
- drill holes in your pot saucers or don't use them at all. Alternatively, if you want to keep them, check them regularly for mosquito wrigglers and empty them when necessary - tip : it's usually bad for most potted plants to be standing in a saucer full of water anyway - it causes root rot. Or you could opt to use those enclosed water storage (self watering planters) to deter mosquitoes from breeding.
- keep your swimming pool well chlorinated.
- any possible container that can catch rain eg watering cans, wheelbarrows, unused pots etc should be either placed under cover (in your outdoor storage shed) or positioned so that they can drain the water trapped in them.
- Avoid working in your garden at dusk and dawn - these are times when mosquitoes are most active so work around these times.
- Wear proper clothing - I know it's tempting to wear short sleeves and shorts when the weather is warm and sunny but wearing a light long-sleeved shirt or blouse and long pants will reduce the surface area exposed to mosquitoes for biting.
- Use repellants if necessary. DEET is popular but it can be poisonous to children at a lower dose rate. Read the labels of mosquito repellants BEFORE applying.
- If you have a pond and are worried that your fish aren't dealing with all the mosquito wrigglers, then you can buy mosquito dunks which are essentially bacteria which are harmful to the mosquito larvae but are not to mammals.
- Spraying with pesticides - can reduce adult mosquito numbers but most pesticides aren't terribly discrimatory and will take out 'good bugs' like bees, and can affect the fish in your pond and can potentially affect you (eg if you grow vegetables and aren't careful in washing before you ingest) or your children - outdoor toys can get coated with the pesticide and children tend to put their hands in their mouths (amongst other things) all the time and therefore their exposure is a lot greater.
A Mosquito Control Ring fits underneath and slowly dispenses an organic insecticide to control mosquito larvae. An attractive way to fight mosquitoes Repels adult mosquitoes above the water and controls larvae below Works with Citronella Tea Lights and Mosquito Control Rings, sold separately Float is 4-3/4" diameter x 3" H Made of speckled glass Gardener's Supply Exclusive. Our decorative glass float does double duty to repel mosquitoes. It holds a Citronella Tea Light to repel adult mosquitoes.
|Replacement Cartridges, Set of 2|
Geraniol (geranium oil) repels insects 400% more effectively than citronella — including mosquitoes, gnats and the dreaded no-see-ums — yet smells pleasant to humans. For use with the Portable Mosquito Repeller, sold separately All-natural geranium oil works better than chemicals Set of 2 cartridges, each offering 120 hours of protection Contains geraniol 3" L x 3/4" D x 1-3/4" H. These geraniol cartridges fit the Portable Mosquito Repeller.
|Mosquito Control Rings, Set of 6|
Our Mosquito Control Rings contain Bt israelensis, a naturally occurring bacterium that kills mosquito larvae for a full 30 days. Each slow-release, floating Control Ring treats 100 square feet of surface area in your pond or water garden. Any standing water can breed swarms of mosquitoes, even your birdbath or rain barrel. Control mosquitoes naturally Rings last for a month Each ring treats 100 square feet Rings measure 2-1/4" in diameter by 3/4" thick Each ring, placed in water, controls 100 square feet of water surface area, no matter how deep Can be stored in a dry, cool area for up to two years.
|No Skeeterz Spray|
DEET-free, non-toxic mosquito spray Proven effective 6-ounce pump spray bottle Geraniol-based and DEET-free 6-ounce ready-to-use spray Effective for up to 8 hours. University testing has shown geraniol is even more effective than DEET for repelling mosquitoes, black flies, nosee-ums, and more. In our own field tests, we found this to be the most effective insect repellent we???ve ever used ??? and it lasts up to 8 hours! Enhanced with soothing aloe vera. Keep harsh, DEET-based repellents away from your skin! Non-toxic, alcohol-free No Skeeterz repellent spray contains geraniol, a natural botanical extract made from geraniums.