When it comes to spring and summertime nuisances, mosquitoes frequently rank at the top of the list. Eastern Virginia’s hot and humid summers make a perfect environment for mosquitoes to breed and multiply. Figuring out how to control them can become a conundrum for thousands of Virginians who want to enjoy their summer outdoors.
There are about 200 species of mosquitoes in the United States, 30 of which can be found in eastern Virginia. Besides being a pest that creates itchy welts on your skin, mosquitoes can also transmit diseases, including Lyme disease and Zika virus. Both can be difficult to diagnose and neither has a cure or vaccination, so it’s best to find preventative measures for protection.
When talking about mosquito control, it’s important to note that repelling mosquitoes is different from killing them. While no method eradicates mosquitos, keeping them away is a combination of preventative methods coupled with repulsion and extermination.
A mosquito can lay eggs in as little as one-half inch of water, and thousands of eggs can hatch within weeks. Keeping your yard neat is the first step in making it an unsatisfying place for them to dwell. Start by taking control of your yard and surroundings. Take inventory of anything outside that can hold a bit of water and regularly check to be sure it stays clean. This includes birdbaths, old tires, swing sets, pet bowls, wheelbarrows, divots in your driveway or ground areas, and other areas around your home. Make it a habit to empty them after each rain.
Some plants naturally repel mosquitoes and make good deterrents. Planting mosquito-repellent vegetation is a wonderful way to keep these pests from hiding in your shrubs. Some plants to consider are citronella, lemongrass, rosemary, lavender, marigolds, and basil. Many of these plants make beautiful additions to your spring garden and can also be used in a variety of ways in your home.
If you have a pool or pond that is part of your landscape, treating it with a larvicide or BTI (bacillus thuringiensis israelensis) can help deter mosquitos from breeding there. Also consider purchasing a cover for your pool to use at night and when it’s not in use.
Our eastern Virginia bats and birds are mosquito eaters and make terrific additions to your mosquito-quelling arsenal. Swallows are known for reducing the mosquito population and can be seen at dusk zipping through the air to get a quick meal. While you can’t control where bats or swallows choose to live, a bat box or birdhouse in your backyard can help make sure these animal friends are close by.
Keep Your Yard Neat
Tall grass and bushes make great hiding places for mosquitos during the day by providing damp, cool areas for them to find shelter. Keep trees and shrubs trimmed to help reduce mosquito numbers and consider using red cedar mulch around bushes. Red cedar mulch is known to be a mosquito repellent and provides a nice fragrance at the same time.
Get Professional Help
Despite taking preventative precautions, mosquitos can still be a formidable problem. A professional exterminator can provide relief to your family and friends with regular treatment. Calling a mosquito technician early in the season is the best way to prevent mosquito infestation and keep mosquito numbers under control. Although mosquito treatment can’t keep away every mosquito, it’s worthwhile to make sure your yard can be enjoyed without paying an itchy price.
Our skilled mosquito exterminators will treat specific areas of your property, including shrubs and damp places where mosquitos hide during the day when they are least active. It’s best to start a prevention program early to prevent mosquitos from breeding on your property. Regular treatments are recommended during the warm months of the year until fall when the temperatures begin to drop.
Eco Pest Control’s exterminators are highly trained and have years of experience treating mosquitos. Contact us for a free property evaluation and information about how a mosquito plan can make your yard enjoyable during the spring and summer.