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Stopping a Mosquito Outbreak

April 3, 2019
By Anesa McGregor , Emmetsburg News

Finally, signs of the changing season is all around us. The days are longer. The temperature is rising, The robins are back. Yep, spring is here.

It is unfortunate that farmers must deal with spring flooding after kast year's fall flooding. It's just something we in Iowa deal with and very seldom complain - well, some don't complain.

With the rising temperatures come mosquitoes and all the flood waters will only exacerbate the mosquito problem. Once the flood waters begin to recede, hopefully it wont be warm enough for the mosquitoes to survive. There will be enough things for everyone to take care of. The mud needs to be removed from any houses, debris needs to be cleaned up, people need to start rebuilding their lives and get back to a somewhat normal routine.

However, since no one really knows when the water will begin to recede, people need to begin to look over their yards and property for any possible mosquito breeding ground. The sooner it is dealt with the better mosquito control you will potentially have.

Mosquitoes love water. They spend their first 10 days of life in water. Water is necessary for the eggs to hatch into larvae, called wigglers.

Wrigglers feed on organic matter in stagnant water and breath oxygen from the surface. The develop into pupae, which do not feed and are partially encased in cocoons. Over several days, the pupae change into adult mosquitoes.

Not only mosquitoes but other biting and bothersome insects will take advantage of the same breeding opportunities as mosquitoes.

Here are four simple things a person can do to decrease breeding mosquitoes on their property.

Step 1: Get rid of any standing water as soon a. Check flower pots, clogged gutters, birdbaths, ornamental fountains, water gardens, rain barrels without screens, animal drinking containers, plastic toys, garbage containers, old tires, etc. Basically anything that could possibly hold water.

Step 2: In any areas of water that cannot be drained, consider using a larvicide to deal with any eggs that may have been laid;.

Step 3: Use an insecticide as well as an insect growth regulator to spray around your yard.

Step 4: Cut tall grass and keep it short. Plant plants that naturally repel mosquitoes - catnip, lavender, marigolds, citronella grass, rosemary, basil or scented geraniums.

The destruction caused by a flood can be difficult to deal with, but don't let mosquitoes and other biting insects add to your problem with their annoying presence.

With the help of insecticides, you can reduce problematic mosquitoes from your property so you can focus on rebuilding, cleaning up and having fun this summer.



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