Nothing takes the fun out of an evening barbeque outdoors like a bunch of bloodthirsty mosquitoes. In addition to inflecting a painful bite, mosquitoes can transmit diseases. You can keep your local mosquito population under control by limiting their habitat on your property, and avoid their annoying bites by using the right barriers and repellents.
Limit breeding habitat
Mosquitoes require water to breed. Adult mosquitoes lay eggs in stagnant or slow moving water, or on moist soil and leaf litter in areas likely to collect water. Keep new generations of mosquitoes from taking up resident in your yard by eliminating these water sources. Get rid of standing water anywhere and everywhere – clogged gutters, drain outlets from air conditioners, dripping faucets, old tires, children’s wading tools, over irrigated and poorly drained lawns, saucers under potted plants, tree stumps and tree holes, water cans, and buckets, and wheelbarrows.
Limit adult habitat
Adult mosquitoes rest during the day, usually on tall weeds or other vegetation. Mow your yard regularly and keep weeds away from your home’s foundation, which makes your yard less hospitable to mosquitoes. To further reduce intolerable levels of biting mosquitoes, insecticides can be applied to the lower limbs of shade trees, shrubs, and other shaded areas, such as under decks and along foundations.
You can limit exposure to the mosquitoes that remain by using effective repellents and barriers. Lemongrass is a natural mosquito repellent and one that grandmothers swear by. Depending on the layout of the area you’re trying to ‘de-mosquito,’ you may even be able to plant some directly into your gardens or borders. Topically applied mosquito repellents will help prevent bites when spending time outdoors. The most effective mosquito repellents contain the active ingredient DEET; the higher the percentage, the longer the protection lasts.
Mosquitoes are found in Texas year round, but become more prevalent in the spring and summer and become more active between dusk and dawn. Mosquitoes can carry West Nile Virus and transmit the disease to humans and animals. Infected human may develop severe symptoms such as high fever, headaches, coma and paralysis. Eliminate breeding sites by reducing standing water, mowing dense vegetation to reduce mosquito habitat, and lighting citronella candles to provide short-term relief on areas such as patios.