Pest Control for Mosquitoes

No one likes the red itchy bump caused by a mosquito bite and we spend a lot of money on zappers, candles and sprays to keep them away, but did you realize that mosquitoes are much more than just an annoyance? Mosquitoes are actually the deadliest animal on the planet, and in fact are much more dangerous to us than other humans. Over a million people around the world are killed by mosquito-borne diseases each year. In the US, we don’t have the problems associated with malaria, yellow fever and other diseases, but even here, 1000 Americans die each year from complications of mosquito bites. Even though vector borne diseases from mosquitoes are not yet a threat to most of the United States, it is still important to be aware of their impact and the possible future for these illnesses. 

Mosquitos are in the taxonomic order diptera, which also includes flies, and means “two wings.” This is distinctive because this group of insects only flies with one set of wings, while the others are reduced to a different form of hind wings called halteres. During certain peak breeding months, with the exception of termites and ants, mosquitoes outnumber every other animal on Earth. In malarial zones, they are responsible for many deaths, and often people in these areas move inland away from the coast, away from these dangerous tiny pests. But despite the impact on humans, mosquitoes get very little attention, even though they kill 50,000 times more people than sharks. Mosquitoes are responsible for killing 725,000 people per year. Rarely are they acknowledged for anything other than their pesky bites, even though they leave marks far more deadly than an itch through their ecological roles as vectors. 

Sick of Mosquitoes? 
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Although most mosquito bites are harmless and a mere annoyance, in some cases the mosquito can transfer diseases with a wide variety of symptoms. The most common, and frequently most lethal, mosquito carried diseases are transmitted by the specific Aedes aegypti. Diseases are only carried by female mosquitoes, as only they can carry the disease to victims without being infected themselves. Some of the many diseases carried and spread by mosquitoes are:
  • Malaria - Although not common in the US, malaria kills thousands each year, especially children. The most common symptoms are flu-like with more severe symptoms in some cases. This disease is different from the others, given that it is defined as parasitic rather than a virus. 
  • Dengue Fever - This disease is found in the Tropics and can be as mild as a few days of sickness to the contraction of a fatal blood disease. Dengue fever is a disease that many travelers should be aware of, because tourists are much more likely to contract the disease because of their immune system vulnerability than those native to other countries. There are two strands of dengue fever, the normal virus and then dengue hemorrhagic fever, which is lethal in most cases. 
  • Encephalitis - This causes inflammation of the brain and most often has mild flu-like symptoms, but can cause more severe coma, brain damage or death. Eastern equine encephalitis virus has been a threat to the eastern parts of the United States. 
  • West Nile Virus - This disease first appeared in North America in 1999, and is fatal in about 2% of cases. It is currently the most likely mosquito borne disease to impact the United States.  
  • Yellow Fever - Yellow Fever is found in Africa and South America, this disease can cause a few days of unpleasantness to death. When traveling to the above mentioned countries immunizations are required.
mosquito on human skin
Although most instances where people contract these mosquito-borne diseases, they recover quickly, there are cases where more severe results occur. These diseases can show in a variety of ways, from flu-like symptoms to death. Most of these diseases are not as common in the United States as other areas of the world, it is still important to be safe and protect your loved ones as you enjoy outdoor activities. Children and the elderly are even more susceptible to mosquito-borne disease, so pest control for mosquitoes is very important.

Tips for Controlling Mosquitoes

The best way to control mosquito populations is to limit standing water on your property. When the first case of a mosquito borne disease was discovered, they were described as water insects because of their attraction towards large bodies of water. Therefore, it is important to control the amount of standing water near your home or business, especially during the warmer summer months. This can be done in a variety of ways. 
  • Turn over larger items like children’s sandboxes and plastic toys.
  • Make sure tarps on pools, grills and firewood are pulled tight so they don’t hold pockets of water
  • Maintain irrigation, downspouts and gutters and make sure they are properly attached.
  • Keep your grass cut low.
  • Get your neighbors on board to keep standing water from their property also.
  • Use a professional misting system or elimination barrier at the perimeter of your home.
  • Have your home treated every 21 days to keep mosquitoes away.
Let the professionals at IPM Pest & Termite help you reclaim your property. Enjoy the outdoors with your family and friends, without worrying about the discomfort or danger of mosquitoes. In Lexington, Kentucky and surrounding areas My IPM is your best bet for professional methods of pest control for mosquitoes that will keep your property mosquito free. The barrier spray treatments every 21 days during mosquito season will make going outside fun again and ensure you and your loved ones are safe from mosquito-borne disease.

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