Take The Bite Out Of Mosquitoes This Summer
By: Judy Leiser
Mosquitoes have always been pesty visitors when it comes to summer enjoyment, but because of the West Nile virus, it has become critical that we do whatever we can to reduce the number of mosquitoes paying visits to our yards.
Paradox Productions has come up with a list of strategies to minimize the attack of the mosquitoes this summer. Most are based on reducing the number of mosquitoes or reducing the desire of the mosquito to attack your tasty family members.
First, get your home and garden mosquito-proof:
- Install or repair window and door screens so that mosquitoes cannot get indoors.
- Reduce or eliminate standing water around your home, even in very small amounts. This includes flower pots, gardening cans, wheelbarrows, puddles, old tires, tin cans, tires, buckets, and open trash cans. Change water in a birdbath every week. For water you plan to keep, try mosquito dunks or rings. http://paradoxpro.com/mosquitos.html
- Keep gutters clear of debris.
- Keep grass cut short and shrubbery well trimmed around your home.
- Eliminate ruts and holes that cause puddles in your yard.
- Consider the new electronic mosquito repellers, which are available in handy keychain size or tabletop versions.
- There are also traps available for mosquitos, which are helpful in keeping the pests away from humans.
- Nets are available to place on your door to keep mosquitoes from coming in your home in the summer. Just attach the net to your doorway.
Second, protect the people who live in your home:
- As much as possible, stay indoors between dusk and dawn, which is peak mosquito biting time. Avoid activities in areas where mosquitoes are plentiful.
- Wear light colored clothing in the summer, which attracts less mosquitoes than darker clothing.
- Consider wearing protective clothing such as long sleeves, long pants and socks while outdoors, especially when walking in wooded areas.
- Apply insect repellent sparingly to exposed skin. An effective repellent will contain 25% to 35% DEET. DEET in high concentrations (greater than 35%) provides no additional protection. Repellents may irritate the eyes and mouth, so avoid applying repellent to the hands of children.
- Consider using mosquito netting in areas your family uses often.
Illnesses related to mosquito bites are rare. However, a person should see a doctor immediately if they develop symptoms such as high fever, confusion, neck pain, muscle weakness or severe headaches. Patients with mild symptoms are likely to recover completely and do not require any specific medication or laboratory testing.
What's New in the Battle over the Mosquito?
- Recent studies have shown that catnip oil is actually several times more effective than most mosquito repellants, although it is not safe to apply it directly to the skin.
- If you have a pond, birdbath or other water feature on your property, try Mosquito Control Rings containing Bt 'Israelensis,' a naturally occurring bacterium that kills mosquito larvae. They can be used in ponds, water barrels, birdbaths and water gardens —-everywhere the insects breed.
These simple techniques can reduce the nagging mosquito problem, at least in own your backyard.
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