Posts tagged with "Mosquito Authority"

Mosquito illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Mosquito Season

How to Prepare for Mosquito Season

Mosquito season is right around the corner. If you happen to live in warmer regions of the country, you might already be seeing some mosquito activity around your home. Even if it will be a couple of months until the warm weather reaches your part of the country, it is very important to prepare for mosquito season early.

Here is why you should begin to prepare for mosquito season early and some ways to do that:

Why should I prepare for mosquito season early?

  • Mosquitoes may already be in your yard: While they seem to disappear in the colder months of the year, some mosquitoes can in fact survive the winter. How? Through a process called overwintering. Overwintering is when female mosquitoes lay their eggs before winter, and the eggs survive and eventually hatch when temperatures rise again.
  • Being prepared means avoiding unnecessary hassle: Why wait until your yard is filled with mosquitoes to do something about them? By preparing early, you can lessen the stress of mosquito season and focus on enjoying your outdoor space.

How should I prepare for mosquito season?

There are a number of ways you can get ready for the beginning of mosquito season and help prevent bites around your home. Below are a few:

  • Hire your local mosquito control company: The best way to beat mosquitoes is to enlist the help of a professional. Our specialists at Mosquito Authority are committed to doing everything possible to ensure your home and yard are mosquito-free zones. Our treatments are even designed to break up the 21-day lifecycle of mosquitoes, which means you won’t be bothered in between treatments.
  • Be aware of the best mosquito repellents and how to use them: Although your home will be mosquito-free after your Mosquito Authority treatments, other outdoor areas might not be. If you are planning on hiking, going to the park, or participating in any other outdoor activities in the spring and summer, make sure to apply insect repellent. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend using products that contain DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or other EPA-registered products.
  • Make sure your yard isn’t a breeding ground for mosquitoes: Mosquitoes need water to lay eggs, which is why any areas of standing water make for popular mosquito breeding grounds. As the snow begins to melt (or you start to experience more rainfall), standing water will start building up around your yard. A big part of DIY mosquito control is getting rid of standing water near your home; this includes tipping over items like trash can lids, tire swings, and children’s toys to empty the water out.

Joe Malinowski is the director of pest management for Mosquito Authority and Pest Authority. He has worked on the operational and corporate side of top companies in the pest control industry. Malinowski served as vice president of technical services at Orkin and vice president of sales for B&G Equipment Company. He also helped launch new and innovative products in the industry for ForeFront Product Design and SenesTech. Operational roles at the branch, regional, and divisional levels have given him an understanding of profit and loss, customer and employee retention, correct product and equipment selection, and precise training to ensure exceptional service.

Mosquito illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 MAGAZINE

Preventing Mosquito Bites Around Your Home

By Dr. Craig Stoops

For many people, mosquitoes are a part of life in the summer. Their presence is annoying and can even threaten the health of people and pets.  

Fortunately, there are ways people can protect themselves against mosquito bites. Three effective ways to control mosquitoes around a house and limit exposure to their bites are: 1) Source reduction, 2) EPA-approved repellents, and 3) Hiring a professional.

Source reduction

Many mosquito species like to use water found in unattended bird baths or discarded items such as buckets, tarps, and children’s toys as locations to lay their eggs and continue the next generation. By emptying and cleaning bird baths and discarding items that can hold water (often called “tip and toss”) one can greatly diminish the mosquito population around their house and protect themselves from mosquito bites.

It is important to get your neighbors involved as well. What they do will impact you because mosquitoes will easily go from one property to the one next door seeking a blood meal.

EPA-approved repellents

There are numerous safe and effective insect repellents available on the market in a variety of formulations such as sprays, creams and wipes. The best and longest-lasting repellents contain the active ingredient DEET, but there are other active ingredients available such as picaridin, IR3535 and several botanical ingredients such as lemongrass oil and others. Visit the U.S. CDC website on mosquito bite prevention for additional information: https://www.cdc.gov/ncezid/dvbd/about/prevent-bites.html

Researchers are always looking for additional “tools for the repellent toolkit” and new effective active ingredients have been recently found. One example is nootkatone. The EPA has recently provided approval for this active ingredient developed by scientists and the U.S. CDC from the Alaska yellow cedar tree. It has shown in the laboratory to be effective at repelling both mosquitoes and ticks and is available for development by a company into a commercially available product. 

Not everyone will be comfortable using a repellent that contains DEET. And repellents are only effective if people use them, so having ingredients like nootkatone available is important in protecting people from mosquito bites. Here is the U.S. CDC webpage on nootkatone: https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2020/p0810-nootkatone-registered-epa.html

Hire a professional

While people can do a lot to control the mosquitoes around their house by discarding and emptying containers that breed mosquitoes, there may be times that getting advice from a professional is necessary to effectively control the problem. Pest control operators specifically trained in identifying the mosquitoes in your yard and recommending an integrated control program can be a great way to provide season-long relief from mosquito bites.  

When considering using a pest control company, be sure to do your homework and make certain you are hiring certified professionals who understand the methods and limitations of mosquito control. These professionals will be able to identify problem areas and use both non-chemical and EPA-approved insecticides to control the problem.

Dr. Craig Stoops (www.mosquito-authority.com), LCDR (ret.) MSC USN, is a retired U.S. Navy medical entomologist and chief science officer at Mosquito® Authority, a mosquito control company. He has conducted mosquito control and research in the United States, South and Central America, Southeast Asia, Africa and the Middle East. He has a B.S. in biology from Shippensburg University and an M.S. and Ph.D. in entomology from Clemson University. Dr. Stoops is board certified by the Entomological Society of America in medical and veterinary entomology.