Battling Against Mosquitoes on the Home FrontIn addition to the fact that mosquitoes are both annoying and cause some level of discomfort when you're unfortunate enough to be the entree on their daily menu, they also carry disease which can affect the animal, bird and human populations. In order to keep the possibility of such a fate to a minimum, you'll need to initiate steps to control these pests in the home environment.
Water that accumulates in tires, buckets and other types of outdoor containers provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Your yard should be carefully inspected for any signs of pooled water that might attract these insects. It doesn't take much to entice mosquitoes to hang around, once they've found a swampy area that they can call home.
Gutters should be checked on a regular basis, in order to avoid the accumulation of leaves and other objects that might form a blockage. When this happens, water can accumulate and offer the irresistible temptation for mosquitoes to breed. This is especially true in those climates which experience autumn, since fallen leaves are abundant and the foliage is often damp due to rain.
Children's wading pools can be the equivalent of a spa for mosquitoes. Be sure to empty the pool at least once each week and refill it with fresh water, if the pool is in constant use. When it's not being used, empty and dry it thoroughly and store it indoors – within a storage shed, basement, garage or other structure that can accommodate its dimensions.
Make it a point to fill holes or depressions in the ground around your home, as well as hollow stumps or holes within the trunks of trees. These, too, can gather water and lure mosquitoes to nest in the area. Be sure not to use foliage, grass or some other type of natural product that might serve to retain water and become akin to a comfy mattress on the mosquitoes' bed.
Screens, doors, windows and other entryways that may contain holes or other violations of their integrity should be repaired in order to keep mosquitoes from entering the home. Of course, it goes without saying that doors and windows that don't include screens should never be left ajar. This would be the equivalent of ringing the dinner bell for these pesky insects.
If you should happen to have an ornamental water garden on your property, be sure to keep the water stocked with mosquito-eating fish, such as goldfish, minnows or guppies. When mosquitoes hover over the water – which they're inclined to do – the fish will eat them and help to reduce their population around your home.
Other precautions, such as covering trash cans, barrels and stored boats will also help your efforts at pest control, but don't rely on bug zappers. These do very little to discourage mosquitoes from taking residence around your home. Your focus should, instead, be on ridding yourself of the excess water that may have accumulated in key points around your property.
by: Sarah Yee
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