That distinctive buzz of a mosquito can be quite an annoying sound, but depending on where you live in the world, it can also be a dangerous one. Mosquitoes carry and transmit many diseases that can harm or even kill humans, such as malaria, zika, dengue, yellow fever, west nile virus, and more. While not all mosquitoes are host to these diseases, it’s still important to avoid their bites. Afterall, no one enjoys those itchy bumps that irritate you for days. Use the tips below to enjoy more time outdoors with less potential danger of being bitten by mosquitoes.
What Attracts Mosquitoes?
It’s hard to battle something and have no idea what your enemy’s weaknesses are. Mosquitoes are tiny, but they are found all over the world, making them extremely difficult to avoid. Is your yard a mosquito haven? Learning just what attracts these pest insects to your property will allow you to form a better plan to eliminate them.
- Water — Water is one of the biggest attractants for mosquitoes. Even the tiniest amount of water can be used for a mosquito breeding ground, but these insects prefer standing water in shady, humid areas.
- Heat & Humidity — Mosquitoes need temperatures to rise over 45 degrees Fahrenheit before they come out of hibernation or can begin to hatch. Warm, humid weather is best for mosquitoes, so be watchful once spring arrives with warmer temperatures.
- Carbon Dioxide — Carbon dioxide is a gas that humans and animals exhale after every breath. While this gas is odorless to us, mosquitoes can detect its scent and use it to track their next bite victim. Click here to see how DynaTrap uses this information to help control mosquito problems.
- Shelter — Mosquitoes need water to survive. To avoid dehydration, they seek shelter during the hottest hours of the day in areas such as woods/forests, under debris, and under plant leaves.
- Lactic Acid — Lactic acid is produced by the human body during exercise and digestion. This natural by-product of bodily processes is entirely odorless to humans, but mosquitoes can detect it and use it for tracking.
The best time to prepare for a mosquito invasion is well before you have one. No one wants to be setting up their defenses amidst a cloud of mosquitoes trying to bite you. There are several ways you can prevent bites by making yourself and your property less appealing to mosquitoes. These tips won’t make you invincible to mosquito bites, but they will absolutely help you reduce the number of mosquitoes on your property and reduce your chances of getting bitten.
Prevent Mosquitoes On Your Property
You may not realize it, but your property could actually be attracting mosquitoes. While not all issues can be easily fixed, many have simple and quick solutions that can make a massive difference. The tips below will help you enjoy more time outside while reducing the mosquito population.
- Clean Up Debris — During the hottest parts of the day, mosquitoes look for shady places to hide. Any piles of leaves, wood, trash, or even toys can provide shelter. By removing these hiding places, your property will be less inviting and force mosquitoes to search for a more habitable area.
- Landscape Uneven Terrain — Uneven terrain can hold water for several days in some cases, providing a place for mosquitoes to lay their eggs. By keeping your yard as flat as possible, drainage problems should not be an issue and will help keep mosquito breeding areas to a minimum.
- Manicure Lawn and Flower Beds — Clumps of cut grass, weeds, and dead leaves make wonderful hiding spots for mosquitoes. Clean up cut grass, keep weeds to a minimum in your gardens, and clean up any dead leaves as often as possible to ensure mosquitoes have no place to hide.
- Reduce Standing Water — Any container that can hold water will attract insects, especially mosquitoes. Overturn any such container to get rid of standing water and store them in a dry area.
- Plant Mosquito Repelling Flowers & Herbs — Not all plants will help you fight against mosquitoes. Herbs and flowers such as basil, lavender, mums, and marigolds will help you repel some of these flying pests naturally.
- Use Mosquito Traps — Nothing traps a mosquito quite like a DynaTrap mosquito trap. These traps actively work to attract mosquitoes away from where you are enjoying your time outdoors and will securely hold mosquitoes until they dehydrate and die.
Making Yourself Less Appealing to Mosquitoes
It might seem like mosquitoes are alerted the second you step outside and want nothing more than to swarm and bite you. Even if you’re just one of those people that mosquitoes can’t get enough of, there are plenty of ways to reduce your risk by making yourself much more difficult or unappealing to bite.
- Wear Appropriate Clothing — The more skin you have exposed, the more opportunities mosquitoes will have to bite it. Try wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, especially at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active to reduce the chances of receiving one or several bites.
- Avoid Peak Mosquito Times — Unless mosquitoes are inside your home, they are typically most active during dawn and dusk when they are less at risk of dehydrating. Minimize your time outside during these hours to reduce your chances of getting bitten.
- Use Repellents or Sprays — Many mosquito sprays and repellents can be toxic, but there are several that contain natural ingredients, such as eucalyptus oil. These sprays will not harm you while they keep mosquitoes away from your skin by using strong scents mosquitoes find unappealing.
- Reduce Body Odor — Mosquitoes are naturally attracted to body odor and the breath we exhale. Exercising or performing outdoor activities can increase your body’s odor. Make sure to take precautions if outdoor activity is unavoidable. Practicing good hygiene will also keep your natural scents to a minimum while also making you less appealing to mosquitoes.
Home Improvement Tips to Prevent Mosquitoes
There are few insects that are more annoying than a mosquito when they manage to get inside your home. Their constant buzzing and ability to seemingly vanish into thin air when you try to kill them are notoriously frustrating. Use the tips below to keep them out and prevent them from returning.
- Install or Repair Screens — If your windows and doors do not already have screens, consider installing them. An open window without a screen is similar to a giant welcome sign for insects. If you already have screens, regularly check them for holes to ensure no insects can get inside.
- Use Mosquito Netting — It may not be practical in all outdoor areas, but mosquito netting was designed for the sole purpose of keeping them away from people. Temporary netting can be installed on doorway entrances to allow easy access indoors and out with less risk or even on hammocks to enjoy a relaxing, worry-free evening outdoors.
- Use Indoor and Outdoor Traps — The best time to use a trap is before you have a problem. Use indoor traps to keep the inside of your home insect free and use outdoor traps to reduce mosquito populations and lure insects away from you and your family. Make sure to place outdoor traps at least 15 feet away from any activity area as the traps will immediately attract mosquitoes.
- Upgrade to Oscillating Fans — Ever notice how on windy days you never seem to have a problem with bugs? Most insects, mosquitoes included, are not strong enough to fly through wind. Use oscillating fans to create constant wind over a large area to keep as many mosquitoes away as possible.
Which Prevention Tips Were the Most Helpful?
There are so many prevention solutions you can try, so start where you feel the most comfortable and build from there to see what works best for you. Share your experiences on our Facebook page and learn from the community there! Stay informed with our e-newsletter about sales, new products, new articles, and so much more.