Mosquitoes are probably the most hated insects on the planet. They can take the joy out of camping, they make walks in the woods less enjoyable, and they annoy us at picnics. No one wants them around. We do everything in our power to get rid of them, but nothing seems to work. We buy mosquito repellant, we buy bracelets that supposedly ward them off, we spray insecticide and foggers, all of which are unhealthy to humans and our environment.
Yet, after all the chemicals we try, there they are biting us over and over again, leaving us to worry about contracting things like Malaria and West Nile virus. Instead of just spraying chemicals and bundling up in clothing that overheats us just to protect ourselves, we need to look at why they are around and what we can do to lessen them or be rid of them altogether.
Mosquitoes: Understanding and Elimination of the Easy and Safe Way
The ideal habitat for the mosquito is a place that is hot and humid. Mosquitoes need the humidity and water to live and to breed. They love the shade and undisturbed hiding spots. It only takes 8 to 10 days to go from egg to mosquito, which means a doubling in population within a week. Knowing and understanding their habitat needs can help you eliminate them altogether.
Eliminating Their Habitats
The following suggestions can eliminate a majority of mosquitoes from swarming around your property.
- Eliminate any standing water. This includes dog bowls, plant saucers, birdbaths, and small ponds. Simply dump each of these out regularly and replace them with fresh water.
- Remove the things that collect standing water that you have no use for. Old tires are a common collector of standing water.
- Keep gutters clean. Removing a build-up of debris will keep water from laying and promoting mosquitoes.
- Empty kids pools and buckets, flip over when not in use.
- Use “mosquito dunks” in undrainable areas such as ponds, rain barrels, and ditches. 1 dunk last 30 days in 100 square ft. of water and is not harmful to fish or wildlife.
- Tighten any tarps or covers such as grill covers, and boat covers so water cannot collect in the creases.
- Pick up leaves and brush piles. These allow a healthy habitat. The more manicured a lawn, the less chance of a mosquito infestation.
- Don’t drink beer! Surprisingly, 12oz. of beer consumed in a human attracts more mosquitoes according to a study by the American Mosquito Control Association.
- Use yellow bug lights, sodium lights, or LED lights in place of regular bulbs in outdoor fixtures.
Plants that Eliminate Mosquitoes
The following list of plants is known to ward off mosquitoes from your yard.
For more information on growing herbs see Growing Herbs.
Insects and Predators of Mosquitoes
The following are creatures you want to attract to your property to help eliminate mosquitoes.
- Bats (see How to Correctly Choose a Bat House)
- Purple Martins (see How Top 10 Plants to Attract Birds to Your Yard)
Homemade and DIY Remedies
The following remedies are tried and tested remedies I found, and have worked to reduce mosquitoes.
- Bounce dryer sheets rubbed on the skin or tucked in pockets seem to help. Comcast suggests it to their techs here.
- A few drops of Dawn dish soap in a shallow dish seems to eliminate about 10 feet of space around the soap from mosquitoes.
- A bubble machine, yes really, because of the liquid soap, seems to work.
- Neem oil rubbed on the skin or on a cloth tucked into a pocket.
- Citronella candles placed about 4 ft apart. It seems to work about a 4 ft. by 4 ft. radius.
- Using red cedar mulch around plants looks pretty and keeps the bugs at bay, all bugs!
- Dropping some coffee grounds into standing water makes the eggs come to the surface and deprives them of oxygen. Mosquitoes won’t breed there anymore.
- Planting a Citronella plant
*Please note*: Bounce dryer sheets and neem oil can cause skin irritation in those with sensitive skin.
By following the suggestions in this post, you should be able to eliminate and control mosquitoes in a safe and easy way and allow yourself to enjoy the outdoors whether it is day or night.
Do you have any DIY simple solutions to mosquitoes? Have you tried the remedies above? Let us know them in the comments below.