War on Mosquitoes

| 8/17/2012 5:21:00 PM

Hardly anyone likes mosquitoes. I probably like them less than many as they really produce a nasty long lasting welt on me. If I forget the repellent on a warm still evening, I’ll have reminders for a week or more. With insects and their multiplication factors it is hard to combat them with natural predators but I try to protect those things that eat mosquitoes. This year I have had a lot of the large dragonflies darting around the yard. It turns out that they are on a quest for mosquitoes. Keep those dragonflies flying! Swallows are another darting mosquito predator.

This charming nestful of swallows hatched under a porch roof. Yes, it was messy! But they are mosquito predators and so were left to hatch, fledge and go out and eat more mosquitoes.

Some other strategies that work are more passive. I use mosquito dunks in ponds to keep down the larvae This seems really effective as it get them before they are out flying about. Citronella seems to work as well. Of course with citronella and various other vegetation solutions, we are repelling mosquitoes not killing them. Your yard may be brightly lit by citronella scented oil torches and you will be happily mosquito free. Those mosquitoes may be eating up your neighbor though.

When the West Nile virus made its appearance here, just repelling mosquitoes was important. I found dead birds in my yard and know people who were hospitalized with West Nile disease. It is not one to take chances with.

The bug lights of some years ago were found to be less effective as they indiscriminately attracted night flying insects.

Carbon dioxide mosquito traps seem like a solution although they are more expensive, from $300 to $1500 according to a University of Florida web site.

8/23/2012 1:19:45 AM

Minnie, it's been so dry and hot here that mosquitos have not been a problem. Then again mosquitos were never a problem for me. They just don't like me for some reason. Not that I'm complaining mind you. :0) Have a great mosquito free day.

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