Reader's lawn and landscaping opinions
Effective mosquito control starts at home
Maura Sellers, President of Mosquito Information Corporation
If you want to enjoy time outdoors without swatting mosquitoes or worrying about mosquito-borne diseases, don’t wait for city spray trucks to do something about it. “There are better ways to turn your yard into a no-fly zone for mosquitoes,” says Maura Sellers, president of Mosquito Information Corporation and publisher of the MosquitoZone.com Web site.
In fact, says Sellers, pesticide spraying is a last line of defense in an integrated approach to mosquito control. “It’s easier and more effective to get mosquitoes where they breed, in the standing water that accumulates around your home and yard.” She explains that hundreds of mosquitoes can hatch in just three days from a tablespoon of water– in unassuming places like trash cans, outside toys, bottle caps and liter, flowerpot saucers, and low spots in the yard.
Instead of relying on cash- and manpower-strapped local officials, Sellers urges homeowners to “own the puddle.” Taking responsibility for eliminating standing water around the home or sprinkling in environmentally safe larvicides such as Pre-Strike® and Mosquito Bits® can prevent thousands of mosquitoes from hatching into biting adults.
“The mosquito that just bit you was probably born within 100 feet of where you’re standing,” says Sellers. “So what you and your neighbors do to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds can make a big difference.”
Besides draining water and larviciding, other ways to fight mosquitoes include skin repellents, mosquito traps and barriers. Homeowners and other interested groups can learn more about how to implement an easy, affordable, time-efficient five-pronged Integrated Mosquito Management Program (IMMP) by visiting www.MosquitoZone.com.