How To Get Rid Of Mosquitoes In Virginia
Due to our proximity to the coast, mosquitoes are some of the most frequent bugs we’ll see in our yard over the summer. While all we want to do is spend time outside with our loved ones or go on a hike at Back Bay, we end up covered in mosquito bites or annoyed by their buzzing. Mosquitoes aren’t just an annoying nuisance, though—they can also be a threat to our good health. In this blog post, we’ll investigate why mosquitoes are attracted to us, the threats they pose, and how to keep mosquitoes away from your family and property this summer.
Who are mosquitoes attracted to?
Frustratingly, mosquitoes are attracted to almost everything about us. Our diets, body temperature, blood circulation, and even our breathing can all function as a beacon for female mosquitoes that need our blood for reproduction purposes.
- Type O blood: Studies suggest that mosquitoes are more than 80% more attracted to people with O blood compared to any other blood type.
- Pregnant women: During pregnancy, the elevated body temperature and increased blood flow that women experience are particularly attractive to mosquitoes, making them up to twice as likely to bite.
- Sweat: Mosquitoes are attracted to the moisture and sodium in human sweat, making them an increased hazard on hot days.
- Potassium: A high potassium diet consisting of a heavy fruit intake can be very attractive to mosquitoes.
- Alcohol: Drinking alcohol increases body temperature, which attracts mosquitoes.
- Breathing: Yes, the very fact that we breathe makes mosquitoes love us. The CO2 that we exhale during normal breathing is very attractive to most mosquito species. Mosquitoes can detect the presence of carbon dioxide from up to 75 feet away!
- The full moon: While it doesn’t “attract” mosquitoes per se, it does increase their activity. During the full moon, mosquito activity can increase by as much as 500%, so it may be best to admire the moon indoors.
Are mosquitoes dangerous?
Troublingly, mosquitoes can pose a serious threat to public health due to their ability to spread disease. It is why local municipalities prioritize mosquito population reduction and why quality mosquito control is so important.
Mosquito-borne illnesses in Virginia include:
- West Nile Virus
- Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE)
- Chikungunya Fever
- Dengue Fever
In the last few years, you’ve probably heard about Zika virus and while there has never been a recorded case in Virginia, our coastal areas are considered vulnerable as known mosquito carriers are present.
How to keep mosquitoes away
Now that we know what attracts mosquitoes, what can we do about it? With a few simple, inexpensive steps, there are plenty of DIY mosquito prevention options. Here are a few to try on your property:
- Plant a mosquito-repelling garden: Strongly scented plants such as lavender, catnip, marigolds, rosemary, or bee balm can act as natural mosquito repellent while simultaneously attracting beneficial pollinators to your yard.
- Eliminate standing water: Quickly get rid of standing water in your yard to deprive mosquitoes of a place to lay their eggs.
- Keep a clean yard: Cleaning up areas of yard waste or fallen leaves deprive mosquitoes of places to escape the heat of the day and will encourage them to look for a stable home elsewhere.
- Change your outdoor lighting: Most insects, mosquitoes included, are attracted to bright light. Replacing outdoor bulbs with soft white light bulbs may entice fewer insects into your yard.
In addition to implementing the mosquito prevention tips above, we also encourage Virginia residents to wear lightly colored clothing when spending time outdoors and hold off on wearing scented lotions and perfumes. Lighting a fire in the fire pit may help ward off these biting pests as they don’t particularly love the smoke and running a fan in your outdoor seating area may make it difficult for mosquitoes to land.
Why you should consider professional mosquito control this summer
The mosquito prevention tips highlighted above may help to keep mosquitoes away somewhat but they’ll never get rid of mosquitoes altogether. At Getem Services, we offer highly effective mosquito control services in Norfolk, Chesapeake, and throughout our service area that drastically reduce mosquito activity all season long.
Our team of licensed pest control specialists will inspect your property to determine mosquito hot spots and then apply targeted mosquito treatments to exterminate mosquitoes in your yard. What’s more, we don’t just target the adult mosquitoes flying around, we’ll also treat potential mosquito breeding areas on your property to disrupt their reproductive efforts. Don’t let mosquitoes drive you indoors this summer, request a free quote from Getem Services for the best in mosquito control in Hampton Roads!