As warm weather approaches, homeowners will want to enjoy their yards. Few things can ruin a barbecue more than a bunch of bloodsuckers crashing the party. Beyond just the nuisance, mosquitoes transmit Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile virus, both of which are potentially very harmful. To help make your home and yard more enjoyable this year, there are a few treatments you can utilize to reduce the number of mosquitoes that trespass on your property. These methods of mosquito control range from do-it-yourself to a professional level so let us help you determine which is right for you.
Some of the most popular mosquito control solutions are those you can pick up anywhere—even the grocery store. Here are the ones you likely know and how effective they are:
- Citronella candles – Many homeowners have had a big brand mosquito-repellant candle in their backyard at some point. But do they actually work? “In the amount and concentration that is put out via candles, it’s not very effective,” says Joseph Conlon, a technical adviser for the American Mosquito Control Association. “As a matter of fact, it’s really not significantly more effective than any other candle would be.”
- “Tiki Torches” – As a backyard decoration, these festive light sources are quite a sight. They utilized the same plant-based oil as citronella candles, so their effectiveness is of similar lacking quality. They do produce more smoke, therefore are slightly more effective but a small amount of wind will neutralize its effectiveness.
- Aerosol Sprays – These well-known staples of a nighttime hike run the gamut from very effective to useless. The key is to find a brand containing an EPA-registered active ingredient like DEET or Picaridin.
DIY Home Measures for Mosquito Control
Many over-the-counter methods of mosquito control aren’t nearly as effective as a preventative measure we routinely recommend. Here are a few things you can do right now to reduce mosquito exposure:
- Mosquitoes love water so eliminate any potential mosquito breeding grounds in and around your property. Mosquitos only need a half-inch of standing water to breed (even something the size of a bottle cap could attract them). Keep stagnant water out of flowerpots, baby pools, buckets, tires, toys, and other objects.
- Wear appropriate clothing. Long pants and sleeves can limit exposure to insect bites.
- Screen all windows and doors and patch any holes or tears—even tiny ones!
- Mosquitoes favor cool, shady spots, so try minimizing these locations around your property. Keep grass neat and cut back any overgrown shrubs or tree limbs. Smooth out any divots or holes in your lawn so they don’t pool with water during a rainfall.
Call in the Professional
We’re a little biased but a surefire way of reducing mosquitoes in your yard can be achieved by applying an EPA registered product in a timely manner AND with the right equipment! Having a certified, knowledgeable technician strategically applying your treatments over the mosquito season will provide you with the least mosquitos and the most outdoor fun this season!
We use only the best in our mosquito solutions. Call us at 413-566-8222 or contact us with any questions or if you are experiencing a pest problem. We have the knowledge and the services to correct your infestation. Ask Graduate about our preventative annual plans to keep your home pest-free year-round!