How to Stop Mosquitoes From Ruining Your Water Features
With spring around the corner in Charlotte, North Carolina, it’s time to start planning ahead on your residential pest control. When we start to head outdoors to clean up our yards and get our gardens ready, so are all of the annoying pests we hate so much, namely, the mosquito. No insect can ruin an outdoor gathering faster in Charlotte than these blood-thirsty insects. Mosquitoes can be more than an annoyance if you are trying to entertain outdoors. They can also carry deadly mosquito-borne diseases such as Zika, West Nile, Dengue Fever, and EEE.
By now, we know that mosquitoes require standing water to lay their eggs. One of the most common areas that mosquitoes breed is our water features. Luckily you can take some steps to protect your water features and eliminate mosquitoes from your outdoor spaces.
Keep Your Charlotte Water Features Clean
It seems like an obvious step, but you’d be surprised how many Charlotte area homeowners let their water features get dirty. Keeping your water features clean is key to keeping mosquitoes and other insects out. Organic debris such as leaves, twigs, and plants such as algae provide food and protection to mosquito larvae. So be sure to clean your water features regularly and use a pond skimmer for larger features.
The Deeper, The Better
Mosquito larvae thrive in shallow water. Even one ounce of standing water can support a healthy larvae population, which can quickly turn into a buzzing horde. Water features with verticle walls and over two feet deep are less attractive to mosquitoes. This could be because the female mosquitoes are afraid of fish or other animals eating their eggs.
Change Your Water Regularly
When a mosquito lays an egg in your water feature, it only takes seven to ten days for it to hatch and grow into an adult. Every other week you could have a new generation of mosquitos preying on you and your guests. We recommend emptying and replacing water in water features such as birdbaths every five days. This will ensure that no larvae make it to the adult stage.
Adding Mosquito Fish to Your Residential Pest Control
Gambusia Holbrooki or the Mosquitofish, as they are commonly known, are tiny eating machines consuming mosquitoes during all phases of their lives. These fish aren’t just efficient at devouring mosquito larvae but also eat other insects and invertebrates. They are usually found in shallow water because they prey on many larger fish and turtles. But despite their tiny size, they are a valuable resource for controlling mosquitoes in Charlotte’s backyards and water features.
In some cases, you can’t have fish or eliminate all plants. In these cases, you can use larvicides. The natural bacterium, Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti), specifically targets larvae of mosquitoes and related insects. They can be purchased at any hardware store throughout the Charlotte area and are sold under various brands, including Mosquito Dunks, Mosquito Bits, and Microbe-Lift. How it works is: the larvae ingest the bacteria and are killed within a few days, preventing them from reaching adulthood. Bti only affects fly larvae, not harming birds or mammals that drink the water.
Promote Natural Predators
Natural predators of mosquitoes such as bats, dragonflies, and swallows can help with mosquito control. These animals feed on adult mosquitoes and larva. So, keeping your natural habitats and wetlands healthy is a great way to keep mosquito populations in check. Support local conservation efforts throughout Charlotte and North Carolina to protect the environment and promote natural predators.
Keep The Water Moving
Mosquitoes choose to breed in water features because it is an excellent still water source. Agitating the water with a bubbler, fountain, or waterfall breaks the surface tension and prevents mosquitoes from laying eggs in fountains or birth baths.
For all Your Residential Pest Control Needs, Call The Pest Control Experts at Cramer
If mosquitoes or other pests are driving you up the wall, call the professionals at Cramer Pest Control. We have years of experience dealing with pests of all shapes and sizes in both North and South Carolina. If you want to protect your home from fall pests this year, ask about our residential pest control program.
Own a business? Our commercial pest control program can save your small business from being overrun with pests.
Don’t wait for the problem to get out of control. If you’re in North Carolina, call us now at (704) 763-0204.
If South Carolina, contact us at 1-803-802-7540 to get started. You can also contact us here for more information. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for the latest deals and check our blog for monthly pest control tips and tricks.