Fight Back Against Mosquitoes

National Mosquito Control Awareness Week gives us all a chance to stay on top of that pesky summer problem with tips to lower populations of the biting insects.

| June 18, 2010

Nobody likes mosquitoes. They are bloodsucking, disease-spreading pests. Mosquitoes are so unpopular that they have an official week devoted to their extermination.

The week of June 20-26 has been declared National Mosquito Control Awareness Week by the American Mosquito Control Association. As summertime temperatures heat up, millions of mosquitoes begin buzzing around in backyards and neighborhoods – biting, spreading disease and generally making a nuisance of themselves.

According to mosquito expert Joe Conlon, a technical advisor for the American Mosquito Control Association, it is impossible to live in a completely mosquito-free environment. Wherever there’s moisture there will be some mosquitoes. But you can reduce your chances of getting bitten by mosquito pests by helping to reduce their breeding habitat.

Immediately after biting a person or an animal to extract a tiny amount of blood, a female mosquito lays her eggs in standing water – usually only yards from where the bite occurred. Upon hatching, the mosquito larvae begin their life cycle in the water. Eliminating pools of standing water near your home is the best way to prevent future generations of blood-sucking little mosquitoes.

Empty the water from birdbaths and swimming pools once a week. Get rid of old tires, unused buckets and trash cans that can hold rainwater. Clean clogged roof gutters to prevent water from collecting.

It doesn’t take much water for a new generation of mosquitoes to breed, so dump out the water in pot saucers at least once a week. And don’t overwater your flower beds or other areas in your yard to the point that standing water begins to collect.

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