- Centipedes and Millipedes
- Occasional Invaders
- Bed Bugs
- Nuisance Birds
- Stored Product Pests
How to Identify Asian Tiger Mosquitoes
First found in Texas in 1985 this mosquito has rapidly spread all throughout the eastern United States. This mosquito is easily recognized by its bold black shiny scales and distinct silver white scales on the its palpus and tarsi. It’s back is black with a prominent white strip down the center beginning at it’s head and continuing along the thorax. It is a medium sized mosquito approximately 2-10 mm in length. This mosquito is a day biting mosquito and is out searching for a blood meal at dawn and dusk. They are often referred to as container mosquitoes because they breed in and around any water holding containers near people’s homes.
Complete development from egg to an adult mosquito typically takes 10 to 14 days. Mosquito larvae and pupae require standing water, and any object capable of retaining water for five or more days is a potential breeding area. Female mosquitoes lay their eggs on or near the water’s surface. Mosquito eggs can remain viable for up to 10 years in the environment, waiting for suitable conditions to arise. Eggs hatch into larvae, or wrigglers, which are filter feeders that consume algae, bacteria and organic matter that is within their aquatic habitat. After about seven days, larvae become pupae, commonly called tumblers, which do not feed at all but do remain mobile. The pupal stage lasts from one to three days at which time the adult mosquito will emerge. Most people are susceptible to mosquito bites, and in some individuals, they cause severe itching and swelling. Mosquitoes can prevent the enjoyment of many yards and outdoor recreational areas. Yet most importantly, several species of mosquitoes are vectors for severe and potentially fatal diseases. These diseases include malaria, encephalitis, yellow fever, West Nile virus, and Zika virus, and the transmission of these diseases is species specific.
Some species of mosquitoes can cause malaria, yellow fever, some types of encephalitis and dengue fever. Public health control measures have almost eliminated these problems in the United States. However, they are severe pests in warm weather because of their annoyance to people. Many outdoor gatherings are interrupted or prevented because people do not want to be aggravated by these pests.
One way to prevent a mosquito problem is to use repellent.
Repellents are substances that cause a mosquito to avoid biting people. Persons working or playing in mosquito-infested areas will find repellents very helpful in preventing mosquito bites. Repellents are formulated and sold as aerosols, creams, solids (sticks) and liquids. For more than 40 years, DEET has been the standard in mosquito repellents. Check the label for this active ingredient.
Follow these rules when using repellents:
• Wear long-sleeved shirts and pants outdoors during peak mosquito activity time periods.
• Apply repellent sparingly to exposed skin or clothing only.
• Keep repellents away from eyes, nostrils and lips: do not inhale or ingest repellents or get them into the eyes.
• Avoid applying high-concentration (>30% DEET) products to the skin, particularly on children.
Here are other ways to help prevent a mosquito problem:
• Dispose of containers that collect and hold water. Do not allow water to accumulate in the saucers of flowerpots, cemetery urns or in pet dishes for more than 2 days.
• Clean debris from rain gutters and remove any standing water under or around structures, or on flat roofs. Check around faucets and air conditioner units and repair leaks or eliminate puddles.
• Change the water in birdbaths and wading pools at least once a week.
• Fill or drain puddles, ditches and swampy areas, and either remove, drain or fill tree holes and stumps with mortar.
• Eliminate seepage from cisterns, cesspools and septic tanks.
• Check for trapped water in plastic or canvas tarps used to cover boats, pools, etc. Arrange the tarp to drain the water.
• Irrigate lawns and gardens carefully to prevent water from standing for several days.
• If ditches contain stagnant water for one week or longer, they can produce large numbers of mosquitoes. Report such conditions to a Mosquito Control or Public Health office. Do not attempt to clear these ditches because they may be protected by wetland regulations.
A professional treatment is the best way to control mosquitoes in a given area. Cook’s Mosquito Patrol offers professional treatment for the control of mosquitoes. Our technicians are thoroughly trained to address your mosquito problems, so you can enjoy your yard and patio without being eaten alive by these pests.
Don’t waste time and money on over-the-counter remedies or unprofessional service. Call Cook’s, the South’s reliable pest control service. We provide free identification and free inspections with no obligation!
- In addition to being a backyard annoyance, mosquitoes kill more people each year than any other animal as a result of the diseases they carry (600,000 from mosquito-borne malaria alone).
- Mosquitoes have transmitted the Zika virus in some parts of Florida.