How to Keep Mosquitoes out of Your Yard

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Mary E.

Subject: Itch stopper

"After Bite" that I buy at the pharmacy (WalMart, Rite Aid, wherever) is the only thing I have ever found that stops, and get rids of the burning and itching in about three minutes. It's a pharmaceutical ammonia. I couldn't live without it here in Louisiana.

robb smith

Subject: skeeters be gone

Has anyone heard that pouring vegetable oil to leave a film on the surface of standing water is an effective treatment? What is the environmental downside?

Michael McKown

Subject: Garlic Spray

For those individuals needing the name and source of the most effective garlic spray it can be found at Lowe's under the brand name "Terminix AllClear" ;

kate

Subject: Birdbaths

Should birdbaths be completely eliminated from yards, since standing water will attract mosquitos?

Chris

Subject: Birdbaths

Not necessarily, It takes at least 5 days for an egg to become an adult. If you dump the water every 3-4 days you should be ok.

Ed Irby

Subject: Around the home

We are going to hear a lot about mosquitoes and mosquito control from the federal government because of the Zika virus. Many people believe ALL mosquito species carry disease. That is not true. Usually each arthrovectored diseases is carried by one or two specific species. In the case of Zika, it is Aedes aegypti, the yellow fever mosquito and Aedes albopictus, the Asian tiger mosquito. Both species will bite throughout the day and night, but are generally daytime biters. Aegypti is the sneaker of the two and a far more cautious biter. Albopictus is an aggressive daytime biter generally coming at you head on. We have 70 species of mosquitoes here in Florida, yet only a double handful seek humans as the primary blood meal. Others will bite if you go where they are, marsh, woodlands, etc. Zika virus is transmitted from mosquito to human to mosquito to human. So is dengue and Chikungunya. Other mosquito vectored diseases, like West Nile, require an intermediate host, like a bird. The problem with Zika is that a person can be infected but show no symptoms. For the two weeks they are viremic, full of virus, they can spread the disease anywhere there are aegypti or albopictus and other humans. The best way to avoid both species is to eliminate any and all breeding sites in your yard and neighborhood and you must follow up weekly. Fundamentally if it can hold water it can breed mosquitoes, e.g., toys, cans, bird baths, gutters, tree holes, flower pots, etc. Both aegypti and albopictus are domestic mosquitoes having evolved and traveled with humans for thousands of years. Contrary to what NASA is saying, aegypti has gotten as far north as Boston and Philadelphia, both cities had major yellow fever epidemics in the 18th Century.

Deborah

Subject: Mosquito Magnet

I live in Interior Alaska, where we call the mosquito our "State Bird"...meaning they are huge, and very, very plentiful!! I have many Alaskan friends that swear by the Mosquito magnet. The cheaper versions, otherwise known as generic versions, don't work nearly as well, but the brand name Mosquito magnet, at least for Alaskans, is a god-send for us in the summertime!! It is an attractant (the carbon dioxide is the attractant), so don't sit too close to it, and you'll need to check it on a regular basis to clean out all the dead mosquitos, but it's "THE THING" here in Alaska!!

Ivy

Subject: Lyme disease

I'm adding Lyme disease to the list of diseases. So whatever you use make sure that you do it to prevent mosquitoes at all.

Del

Subject: Baking Soda for Mosquito bites

I have severe allergic reaction to mosquito bites. As soon as you feel a bite make a paste of baking soda and small amount of water and apply over bite - it will eliminate itching and reduce pain and swelling. Leave it on for about five minutes and the wipe off with water or damp cloth. Only downside is you must apply the paste as soon as you feel the bite, itch, or pain. It won't work once itching and swelling begins. I carry soda in a small plastic bag of soda in my wallet or pocket for outdoors; and keep pre-mixed paste in used prescription bottles. I also like the "#1 Electronic Bug Zapper - Pest Sentry Insect Killer - The Ultimate Mosquito Killer" on Amazon for about $60, place near entry and kills mosquitos, and moths as other flying insects that enter the house.

Joanne

Subject: Reduce pond mosquitos

We have a marshy pond next to out house that breeds MANY mosquitos. Is there a way to control them that will not affect our supply of well water?

Phil

Subject: garlic spray

for those folks looking for the name of the garlic spray, go to Google and type in 'garlic spray for pest control'. There re a number of them.

msteri

Subject: Name of Garlic Spray

Several folks have chimed in about a garlic spray that works well. Could someone please tell us the name and brand? Also where to buy it. Thanks

Michael McKown

Subject: Garlic Spray for Mosquitos

Here in Colorado you can buy the product at Lowe's stores. The product name is "Terminix AllClear" and comes in a two-pack of spray cans. To the best of my knowledge TERMINIX is the only commercial pest control company that uses a 2-stage garlic treatment that not only drives mosquitos out of your yard, but also gradually eliminating then completely by breaking up the breeding cycle, as it has an additional ingredient that kills mosquitos. Last summer I went from Alaska style infestation in May to complete eradication of the pests by early July,

Benton

Subject: Don't use pesticides! Use Humming birds!

Humming bird’s main food source are mosquito.

To attract them to your yard, Humming bird juice as a supplement is needed. Feeders are not expensive and you can make your own juice to keep from buying the overly priced mix from the store.

My formula is one unit of sugar too four units of water. Boil the water to make sure it's sanitary and to make the juice last longer (you don't want it to ferment). To completely dissolve the sugar, mix in while the water is hot. You can refrigerate up to ten days.

Start with a smaller amount of juice in each feeder. In my yard they will go through about a half a cup in three to four days. If it's hot outside you may have to change the juice more often to keep it from going bad. When you change the juice, clean the feeders. The birds will be repelled by the rancid smell of fermented juice. Put out as many feeders as you can all around your yard at locations that can't be seen from each other feeder. The birds are fiercely territorial and will spend more time protecting the feeder that they perceive as theirs, than doing the job that you attracted them there to do.

I have seen the birds destroy swarms and hunt down single pest, including small flies and gnats. Once a bird finds you a feeder, more will arrive and your yard will be clear without using any pesticides.

Joan Hormel

Subject: mosquito yard spray

Years ago Paul Harvey had a segment on one of his shows about a recipe for mosquito yard spray: (1) big bottle of blue cheap mouthwash, (3) C. Epsom Salt, (3) 12oz cheap beers, Mix til salt is dissolved. Spray anywhere you sit outside, around pools. Will not harm plants or flowers. Mosquitos stay away from area for approx 80 days. This person sprays her deck all around her sitting areas twice a summer, goes out and sits in her underwear all the time at night and never gets bitten. Mosquitos leave that area you spray and will not come back. She has been using this mixture for the last 15 yrs. It works! All her friends that have tried it can't believe it. The stronger you mix the longer it lasts. Mosquitos and bugs hate it...Nice mint smell.

Marci Little

Subject: Paul Harvey recipe for mosquitos

I have tried this numerous of times in the last week. No luck mosquitos are still around and biting. I spray the yard the area where I am sitting and still no luck. Help with suggestion. Like the ingredients

Michelle Bartman

Subject: stronger

how can it be mixed "stronger" ?? That doesn't make sense. Does it??

Thank you!

Michelle

Curt

Subject: Mosquito Control

Two posts are inaccurate. Pyrethroids such as permethrin are actually used by beekeepers to rid hives of mites. Beekeepers use barrier treatments on their own properties with no adverse impact on hives, butterflies or beneficial insects. Beneficials "digest" the product like humans do. Mosquitoes and ticks do not have the same capability which is why it is so target specific and likewise does not affect frogs.

The product Mosquito Squad uses also adheres to plants and will not wash off or migrate which does in fact protect the watershed, surface waters, aquifers and wetlands,

Charles Ranney

Subject: Compost piles

In our area we have a lot of encouragement to do composting. It would appear from the above article that compost piles would encourage mosquitoes. What gives?

Jay J

Subject: Mosquito control

Have heard that a mixture of dish soap and salt will do the trick on weeds. Does it work on mosquito larva?
We have a drainage ditch behind our home which means we will have to treat it every time there is a rain, right?

Pam Springall

Subject: Mosquito control

I use mosquito dunks in our fountains and self-watering pots. Home Depot has them. You can cut or break them up in small pieces. A little goes a long way. They work and they don't hurt anything else.

Carole Womeldorf

Subject: Alternatives to toxic sprays

Another aspect of control is to protect natural mosquito predators such as dragonflies, ants, ground beetles, spiders, water striders, frogs and snails. Avoid spraying broad-spectrum insecticides that kill off many of these beneficial creatures. See: Mother Earth News for comprehensive advice. (Chickens eat mosquitos too!)

Michael McKown

Subject: Garlic Spray

There is a product on the market that contain garlic oil and a sweetener. After spraying on mosquito breeding areas it clogs their proboscuis and they die from lack of food. The garlic spray will keep them at bay for weeks once applied, and is impervious to rain run off. Since it kills the adult mosquito it interrupts the breeding cycle, and after a month or so you are mosquito free. I buy it at Lowes, but I'm sure it is available in almost any quality hardware store.

Memory

Subject: Garlic Spray

If you have Dogs or Cats please be mindful when using Garlic Spray because garlic is extremely toxic to dogs and cats and the consumption of even a small amount can lead to severe poisoning and, if not treated in time, death.

Rich Garella

Subject: yes to garlic spray!

Yes, in addition to removing standing water of course, the garlic oil spray works great. The best kind comes in a bottle you attach to a hose. Two to four dousings over the summer (more if it rains a lot) will pretty much eliminate mosquitoes in your yard, especially if your yard is somewhat protected from wind. It is a life changer. And unlike the pesticides it will not poison the whole place and kill the insects we need.

Ann Hancock

Subject: Mosquito Control

I spoke with an applicator for a mosquito control company in our area, and he confirmed that the pyrethroids they use in their spray would kill all insects, INCLUDING bees, butterflies and other beneficial insects as well as mosquitos. Also it is an inconvenient truth that the areas with the most mosquitoes are near wetlands, (see warning in the article "However, the agency warns that runoff from the pesticides can be harmful to aquatic life"). Thus, if you apply these insecticides, chances are that the runoff will end up in the wetland where it will kill aquatic species.

I WANT bees and butterflies, fish and frogs. If we are supposed to be helping bees and other pollinators, why are we advocating for pyrethroid sprays?

Tamara Jackson

Subject: Thanks!

Thank you for posting this! I hope more people become aware of what we are doing to our environment with all of the pesticides and chemicals we are inundating ourselves with. I wish people would look for natural alternatives before going straight to something that kills off our needed pollinators.

Carl

Subject: It's too bad the author hasn

It's too bad the author hasn't replied to this. Thanks for bringing this up. In my yard, like a lot of people, I have flowers. It's a delight to see all the bees and butterflies flopping around. We used to have frogs around, but everyone using pesticides has put an end to that.

Emigsviller

Subject: CO2 Bait

Knowledge or experience anyone...?
Does the device work, that mounts on a propane tank, emits CO2 as a lure, and traps the monsters?

Jerry

Subject: Mosquito traps

We used a Mosquito Magnet for a few years, until we realized we were drawing them from the surrounding yards. The year that we stopped using it, there were fewer mosquitoes. They are back now.

John

Subject: Mosquito Magnet

I bought one last year, and without a doubt, it does catch mosquitoes in NE Indiana. I have the solar version so no wires for the fan. They're expensive to buy, and $12.50 propane tanks last 3 weeks, so it costs a little to operate, but probably the same as using the chemical method, which never seemed to work. I tried to count the mosquitoes I caught but could only guesstimate, maybe 500-1000 in a season. And if you stand near the machine while it's operating, you will get bit, so it definitely attracts them. Certainly not 100% catch rate, but we did notice a reduction in the mosquitoes. We'll see this year how much it catches, since we're likely to have a big mosquito year. There are many mixed reviews on these devices, and from one year of experience with them, I'd say they do work, but don't completely eliminate mosquitoes as they advertise.

Lew Alessio

Subject: propane tank, CO2 emitting lure...

I bought one, paid $495. Caught few mosquitos, then stopped working. The company sent another one which also didn't work. The company sold and the new buyer refused to replace it.

Jude Keys

Subject: mosquito control

One of my cousins always seemed to have a mosquito-free backyard. Her secret was that she mixed a small amount of liquid dish soap with water in a garden hose type sprayer and sprayed her lawn, shrubbery and gutters with the soap mixture several times per week. She claimed that the soap formed a film on the mosquito larvae, depriving them of oxygen and killing them. Seemed to work - - she had the most mosquito free yard in the neighborhood.

Lee

Subject: toothpaste

Ounce a mosquito bites you put a touch of toothpaste on the bite. Not only will it stop the itch, it reduces swelling and redness. I do a lot of yard work and there are times my legs have dozens of bites and it would be too itchy without the toothpaste.

Joanne Hoschette

Subject: Stopping the itch

I did not know about toothpaste. One method I use is to first clean off the bite with either hydrogen peroxide or alchole. I keep lots of individule packaged alchole wipes on hand ( home, purse car) 2nd apply a cortizon cream. But the most important is to put a spot size Band-Aid over the bite after cleaning & letting the area dry. The bandaid stops the frequent rubbing/ brushing of the infected area, which stops the stirring up of the histamines injected by the mosquito ( which is one reason why we are told not to scratch at the bite area) Even cloths brushing over the bite area can stir things up, and keep the itch reoccuring. After many years of camping, and tons of gardening, I found this to work the best. But I may give the toothpaste a try too. I would imagine that the toothpaste forms a crust like barrier similar to the bandaid . For that reason I would guess that a paste type works better than a gel type toothpaste.... right ?

dave robbins

Subject: Mosquitoes

What about putting up Bat Houses?? Are they effective in killing mosquitoes without using poisons?

Diana Lamirand
Diana Lamirand

Subject: Are bat houses effective in killing mosquitoes?

According to the American Mosquito Control Association, there's no question that bats eat mosquitoes, but their primary food sources are beetles, wasps, and moths and they tend to be opportunistic eaters. The AMCA doesn't recommend using bats as the sole measure of mosquito control.

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Answers

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You have a lot of questions. I will try to cover them all.

First, mice can fit through a hole the size of a dime.
Second, unlike rats, mice are very small; it would take a major infestation to generate a persistent odor as indicated.

Elimination starts by sealing the exterior foundation of the home, door sweeps, broken windows, cracks in the foundation, holes around electrical service, water faucets and dryer vents.

Secondly, food sources must be eliminated. Mice only need 1 gram of food a day and they extract water directly from the food they digest.

Next, mice infestations are more localized than people think, bait under the house might not have any effect. Heat sources like refrigerators and hot water heaters are suspect as a base of operation.

Snap traps are highly effective when used where dropping are found. Use a variety of bait, peanut butter (avoid this if children are present), brownie, fruit and even dental floss tied to the pedal (nesting material).

As for the odor, look for an enzyme based cleaner / deodorizer.

 

If the problem continues seek the help of a Pest Control Professional with rodent experience.
 

Hope that helps,

Andrew Deluca



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The quickest way I've found to get rid of them (as opposed to preventing them - see answer above) is to put a half cup of cider vinegar (must be cider vinegar) in a jar or bowl and put a half-dozen drops of dishwashing liquid on top of it.  Leave out on a counter wherever the problem exists. Empty and refill as needed.
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Legally, it needs to be pest control - wildly boring technical explanation regarding Federal pesticide laws that I won't bother you with.  Having said that, depending on where they are located in your chimnet, you could do it yourselt.  Most wasp control products will shoot 12'-20'.  So, if they are in a lower section of your chimney you wait until dark (they return to their nests before dark) and reach up above your damper and spray the nests.  If you're not averse to being on your roof, do the same thing from the top.  Otherwise, hire a professional.
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