With our hot summers and year-round humidity, the mosquito is a familiar sight in the Baltimore, MD area. Far from being a mere buzzing irritant, the mosquito is the most dangerous animal on Earth. Because of the diseases it spreads, the mosquito kills up to a million people per year – that’s even higher than the global murder rate. Fortunately, here in the United States, we don’t have the deadliest disease spread by mosquitoes (malaria). But that doesn’t mean we’re out of the woods with mosquito-borne illnesses. These pests still spread several frightening diseases. Let’s talk about a few ways to protect yourself.
As we said above, mosquitoes spread many dangerous diseases in the US. Most of the mosquito-borne illnesses in this country kill by causing encephalitis, or swelling of the brain’s tissue. Mosquito-borne diseases in the US include:
- West Nile Virus
- Western Equine Encephalitis
- Eastern Equine Encephalitis
- La Crosse Encephalitis
- Zika Virus
- Chikungunya Virus
While deaths from mosquito bites are rare in the US, if you experience any of the following symptoms in the weeks after receiving a mosquito bite, seek medical attention immediately:
- Severe headache
- Stiff neck
- Loss of consciousness
Mosquito Prevention Tips
Contrary to popular belief, mosquitoes don’t feed primarily on blood. Female mosquitoes are the only ones who seek a blood meal, and they only do so when they’re preparing to lay eggs. At all other times, both male and female mosquitoes feed mostly on nectar, making them important pollinators for the flower species they feed on. However, that doesn’t mean you want these disease spreaders buzzing around your yard. Fortunately, there are some things you can do.
Probably the biggest way to prevent mosquito infestation on your property is to eliminate breeding sites. Mosquitoes need water to breed, so getting rid of standing water around your home will discourage them from sticking around your property. Eliminate things like birdbaths, kiddie pools, outdoor pet bowls, etc. If you don’t want to get rid of these items, change the water in them at least once every other day in the warm months.
Trimming trees and shrubs can also help discourage mosquito activity. Some mosquitoes only need moist soil to breed, and getting rid of unnecessary shade can help aid evaporation and dry out the soil. Shortening shrubs can also eliminate mosquito hiding places and – in some cases – the flowers that attract them.
Planting mosquito-repellent herbs and flowers can also help repel these pests. Mosquito-repelling plants include:
- Scented Geraniums
Burning candles or oils with these scents may also help repel mosquitoes in your immediate vicinity if you’re spending time outside, but the jury is still out as to how effective this is.
What To Do About An Existing Infestation
Unfortunately, when female mosquitoes are ready to breed, they’ll go to great lengths to get enough protein to lay their eggs. If they lay their eggs on your property, you could have a serious mosquito problem within days. If that happens, don’t waste your time with sprays and traps. These may kill a few individuals, but they won’t get the entire breeding population. So most people need expert help to get mosquitoes off their property.
Here at Pest Czar, customer service is at the core of everything we do. We offer safe, effective, and eco-friendly mosquito control services. We’ll inspect your property and tailor a treatment plan that works for your needs, not our sales goals. So give us a call at (855) 273-0517 or visit our contact page to get your free quote today.