Mosquitoes have bedeviled campers, anglers, hunters, picnickers, Alaskans and just about everyone else who has ever spent time in part of their range. Yes, they are annoying, and yes, they can cause disease like West Nile Virus.
But with all the products out there advertised to control them, how do you know what actually works and is safe?
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution points out that there are numerous species of skeeters, each with their own lifestyle. Many breed in water, but some actually reproduce in trees. Many like to feed during crepuscular hours, while some are hungry in the midday.
June 22 through 28 is -- believe it or not -- National Mosquito Control Awareness Week, so get prepared, and don't let the bit-sized biters ruin your summer fun. Add your own tips to the comments.
1. Remove Standing Water
Standing water is literally a breeding ground for many mosquitoes, so get rid of it, duh! Even small catches like flower pots, birdbaths and clogged gutters can be trouble, so take a good look.
2. Screen Em Out
Put screens on your windows (you can get removable ones from hardware stores if you don't have them installed), and make sure they don't have skeeter-sized holes in them.
3. Make Sure Vents Are Covered
You don't want to provide a tunnel for bugs to use on raiding missions.
4. Wear Light-Colored Clothing
According to the Journal-Constitution, skeeters are attracted to darks.
5. Silence Your Bug Zapper
The dang things are woefully ineffective, and char mostly beneficial bugs. Newer models that emit CO2 as an attractant do work better, but they are expensive.
6. Forget Ultrasonic Repellers
Studies show they just don't work well.
7. Embrace Wind (and Fans)
Skeeters are easily disrupted by moving air, so they'll move on if there's a nice breeze. That also means you will be bothered much less if you keep moving.
8. Get a Natural Repellent
There are many varieties available now from natural products companies, with formulas that are free of questionable DEET, and include soothing herbs. Check out these 7 great ones.
Check out the Atlanta Journal-Constitution for some more tips and info.
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