Mosquitoes

What are mosquitoes?

Tiny fly-like insects that are most active when people are active, mosquitoes are bothersome, biting pests that no one wants living on their Virginia property. Mosquitoes seem to have an unspoken commitment to making us miserable. Mosquitoes have two wings and are a type of fly, but they differ from other flies because their wings are covered in scales. They also have a long-piercing mouthpart (proboscis) they use for sucking up liquids. The principal food source for mosquitoes is nectar or other sugary liquids.

a mosquito on human skin

The male’s proboscis differs from the female’s in that it is not strong enough to pierce human or animal skin. Males do not consume blood meals; only females do in order to get the protein they need to make eggs and complete their life cycle. When female mosquitoes pierce the skin with their proboscis, they inject two tubes — one to inject an enzyme to stop the blood from clotting and the other to suck out the blood.

Are mosquitoes dangerous?

There is no denying that mosquitoes are annoying; beyond that, they are dangerous, disease-transmitting pests. They are vectors of diseases that make people and animals ill. Avoiding contact with mosquitoes as much as possible is essential in order to help avoid the diseases they can spread. While not every mosquito is carrying a disease they can transmit, the potential is there.

As mosquitoes feed, they transmit diseases through their saliva. Mosquitoes spread West Nile virus and encephalitis in our area. Mosquitoes also transmit parasitic heartworms to our pets. Heartworm disease is life-threatening, and you shouldn’t take it lightly. Place pets on a year-round preventative medication under their veterinarian’s guidance to protect them from becoming infected.

Why do I have a mosquito problem?

If your property offers mosquitoes breeding grounds (standing water), resting spots (tall grass and overgrown landscaping), and food sources (flowering plants and trees), they won’t hesitate to make themselves at home. Mosquitoes are prolific breeders; if the environmental conditions are right, it can take only between eight and ten days to develop from egg to adult.

Where will I find mosquitoes?

Mosquitoes live in most outdoor spaces, especially those with or near areas of standing water. You generally don’t have to worry about finding mosquitoes as they will always find you. Exhaled carbon dioxide, body odor, and movement attract mosquitoes to people and animals. Mosquitoes tend to be most active in the spring, summer, and fall when the weather in Virginia is warm and humid. After long periods of rain, mosquito populations explode because these conditions provide lots of standing water to lay their eggs.

Marshes, swamps, ditches, tree hollows, wooded areas, and low lying areas are favorite breeding locations for mosquitoes. Heavy rains fill up containers such as buckets, flowerpots, gutters, wheelbarrows, and clogged gutters with the water these insects need to lay their eggs.

How do I get rid of mosquitoes?

As outdoor pests, mosquitoes are difficult to prevent and control. Partnering with a professional is the best way to reduce the number of mosquitoes breeding and feeding on your property. At National Exterminating Company, we provide the routine services necessary to eliminate adult mosquitoes and their developing larvae from your outdoor space.

Using low-impact, environmentally friendly pest solutions, we offer the outdoor treatments needed to minimize mosquito activity, allowing you and your family to enjoy your outdoor space once again. To learn more about our mosquito control services, call the friendly professionals at National Exterminating Company today!

How can I prevent mosquitoes in the future?

Don’t allow mosquitoes to take over your home or yard; with our professional services and the following tips, you can reduce mosquito populations on your property:

  • Get rid of mosquito breeding grounds from your property by eliminating areas of standing water. Remove tree stumps, keep containers upside down when not in use, and keep gutters clear of debris.
  • If you own a pool or other man-made water structure, make sure the water is continuously circulating and treated.
  • Get rid of resting spots from your yard by keeping the grass cut short and not letting landscaping become overgrown.
  • Know that peak mosquito activity occurs at dusk and dawn. If possible, try to avoid spending time outside during those periods of the day.
  • Keep mosquitoes out of your home by keeping screens in open windows and doors.

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