Wouldn’t it be nice to spend time outdoors without worrying about mosquitoes? You can reduce mosquitoes by identifying and eliminating mosquito breeding sites around your home. To help reduce mosquitoes in your neighborhood, follow these helpful tips.
10 Tips to Eliminate Mosquito Breeding Sites
- Adjust sprinklers to prevent over-watering, which can create ideal conditions for mosquito breeding.
- Clean gutters frequently. Debris can clog and obstruct water flow from your roof, causing gutters to fill up with standing water.
- Throw away or store items that can accumulate standing water. If these items are used often, they should be stored upside-down.
- Clean your pool regularly and keep it chlorinated. Clean pool covers, which can also collect water and debris.
- Fill tree holes or stumps with a sealant or mortar to prevent water accumulation.
- Identify drainage ditches or swampy areas. If an area cannot be drained, treat standing water with a product to control mosquito larvae, such as Mosquito Dunks® Larvacide.
- Stock ornamental ponds with mostquito-eating fish such as western mosquitofish, goldfish, and guppies.
- Inspect your roof for leaks and keep an eye out for leaking outdoor faucet and air conditioning units. Repair any leaks to eliminate the possibility of standing water.
- Change the water in bird baths and wading pools at least once a week.
- Aerate ornamental ponds or pools to prevent mosquitoes from breeding in still water.
Tips adapted from M. F. Potter, Lee Townsend, and F. W. Knapp. Mosquitoes: Practical Advice for Homeowners. University of Kentucky College of Agriculture. July 2003.
Bonus: 5 Tips to Reduce the Chances of Being Bitten by Mosquitoes
During the time of year when eliminating the breeding sites isn’t enough, there are options to reduce the chances of being bitten.
- Wear clothing that covers your body, including long-sleeved shirts, long pants and socks.
- Close windows, doors, and screens to prevent mosquitoes from entering your home.
- Keep your lawn property maintained. Mosquitoes like to rest in weeds, brush, and other overgrown areas that collect water.
- Apply a repellent that contains an EPA-registered active ingredient like DEET or picaridin; be sure to follow all label directions. For children, use repellents that have no more than 10 percent DEET.2
- Be aware of the peek hours for mosquito activity (at dawn and dusk) and educate your family on using extra protection during those hours.