Mosquitoes 2018

Jamie

I know I usually bring this subject up late in the season - but they sure have been aggressive the past couple weeks.

Just curious - for those who had a mosquito problem this year - did you employ any solutions that actually WORKED?

I saw a lot of mosquito squad signs - anyone have luck with them?

Last thing I tried for the heck of it was Cutter Natural - didn't do anything.


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jeffl

We had “organic” mosquito control treatment.  About 30 minutes after my yard was covered with the smoke I went on my deck.  Within 5 seconds I was bitten by a mosquito.  Oh well. 


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dickf3

No problems here, but last year my neighbor had a mosquito problem. 

She called the county (“Putting Essex County First”) - Essex County Mosquito Control.

I was home outside when the truck pulled up to her house. The truck was not adorned with a picture of the County Executive, though it was an Essex County truck. The guy first surveyed her property, then brought out a backpack sprayer, and sprayed around planting beds.

I saw my neighbor a few days later; she told me problem solved.


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Robert

from Robert Roe, Maplewood Health Department:  This is a subject that many of are concerned about.  With more and more lawn companies spraying for mosquitoes and ticks, my concern is that non-target insects such as honey bees and butterflies and the whole insect system may be damaged.  I do not have any definitive information either way.   

So, is there an entomologist or other biologist in town that understands both the proper use of insecticides and also the insects involved?  I will be glad to talk and consult with you.  One part is clear, flowering plants where insects forage must not be sprayed. 


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blianderson

I wear bug spray inside the house.


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steel

Mosquitoes do not respect property lines.


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jmitw

I missed my arm with the spray one night and have DOZENS of bits on one fore arm....they even went after my face since I didn't spray that


problem with treating your area, is they will just hang out at your neighbors and fly over to you


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Claudia

We had the county come and spray one time. After, we enjoyed a blissful, mosquito-free 36 hours. And then they were back. And they were pissed.


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Robert

from Bob Roe again:  The spraying only kills the flying biting adults.  It does not stop breeding in stagnant water.   Check your yard and yards around you.  Even small amounts of stagnant water can breed mosquitoes.  I have seen and dumped over a hundred or more stagnant water containers, from very small to unused back yard pools this summer in my inspections around town.  I  think most people do not even think to look.  It is a sign of our times that people do not even think about stagnant water and mosquito breeding.  I saw some breeding in a styrofoam ice cream cup today.  


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Claudia

agree with Bob. Unfortunately, no control over what neighbors do. LOL


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lanky

We use Cutter which seems to work.  Besides the mosquitos, the gnats in Borden Park seem particularly thirsty these days, as such I go with 25% DEET spray.



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Jackson Fusion

it’s standing water that is the major problem. Asian tiger mosquitos, which are our nice imported and most prevalent kind now, can breed in tree knot holes. So planter dishes, clogged gutters and soda cans give them plenty to be happy about.


Try mosquito dunks in larger areas. It’s all natural and contains a bacteria that kills the larvae.


I’m amazed at the water that has been allowed to collect in the construction site on Springfield. Mosquito heaven.


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spontaneous
RobertRoe said:
from Robert Roe, Maplewood Health Department:  This is a subject that many of are concerned about.  With more and more lawn companies spraying for mosquitoes and ticks, my concern is that non-target insects such as honey bees and butterflies and the whole insect system may be damaged.  I do not have any definitive information either way.   

 Years ago we sprayed our entire back yard.  It worked.  But then we noticed that we also had no fireflies in our back yard while our neighbors did.  We never sprayed again after that

We did notice that these new striped mosquitoes can breed in almost anything.  Even wet mulch.  It's crazy.

In the end we took to keeping insect repellent on hand.  The real stuff, not home remedies like regular Skin-So-Soft* or dryer sheets.

*Avon has latched onto the reputation of Skin-So-Soft as a bug repellent and now makes a version that actually has legit repellent in it.  That one works.  The plain variety, on the other hand, has been shown to not actually work no matter what people claim

Here is an article about different repellents and how well they work after four hours.

https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2018/06/30/623865454/a-guide-to-mosquito-repellents-from-deet-to-gin-and-tonic


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Steven
blianderson said:
I wear bug spray inside the house.

Other than being vigilant about standing water, this really is the most simple and ethical solution. 


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steel

I always use bug spray on myself when I work outside and it works. I'm not sure if spraying poison too often on myself is a good idea but I don't think it's affected me at all, affected me at all. I don't think it's affected me at all or affected me. At all has it affected me not even has it affected me. All.


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Jamie
RobertRoe said:
I saw some breeding in a styrofoam ice cream cup today.  

Is it easy to spot them breeding? 

I wonder if these may be to blame also since water probably sits in the ridges between rainstorms.


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Robert

from Robert Roe: A couple of points.  the construction site on Springfield Ave. was put on notice and a couple of days later they pumped out the water.   I do think that the plastic roof drain extenders could be a breeding spot.   Whenever I check and dump mine, I am always surprised by how much water comes out.  Tiger mosquitoes love to breed in stagnant water in tires.

While we have many types of mosquitoes in Essex County, the two most common in Maplewood are the Culex (which come out at dusk or are in woody shady areas) and the Tiger mosquito which seems to come out at anytime.   These Tigers are smaller, but very aggressive.  

Finally, we at the Health Dept. and Environmental groups, really do want to know if the backyard mosquito spraying is an environmental hazard or not.  I have consulted several experts and all were concerned and could see a possible danger, but no one could definitively say it was too dangerous and should stop.  A lot depends on the skill of the lawn companies.   They must not use too strong a spray mixture and they must prevent drift and they must not spray flowering plants.  

The one comment about lightning bugs is interesting.  Also, by using too much weed killer and fertilizer, you are making your lawn a desert for insects.  No clover means no honey bees.    


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Jamie

hmm i wonder if these planters are contributing to the issue.  There always seems to be some water in the base.


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joan crystal

Very likely.  Do they have drainage holes?  If not, can drainage holes be added?


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Jamie

I was able to pop off the bottom sections of the planters - they looked like a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.  

@RobertRoe - I'm curious - how soon do the mosquitoes flee after their water source is disrupted?  I sprayed myself a bit, but I noticed fewer mosquitoes almost immediately.


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Robert

from Bob Roe:  I do not know.   Another mystery.  


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Jackson Fusion
jamie said:
I was able to pop off the bottom sections of the planters - they looked like a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.  
@RobertRoe - I'm curious - how soon do the mosquitoes flee after their water source is disrupted?  I sprayed myself a bit, but I noticed fewer mosquitoes almost immediately.

 Tiger mosquitos are weak fliers. That said, they travel about 150 yards from where they breed. Not very far in terms of typical mosquito travel distance but enough to cover a typical Maplewood block.


That said, the fewer you have in your yard breeding, the fewer you’ll have of homebodies hanging around.


Fans do a nice job of keeping them away. You may have noticed they bite around your feet and ankles. That’s their gig- they’re shy biters and will bite several times rather than going “all in” on one big pig out meal. And being weak fliers they don’t go so high. A fan blowing under the picnic table will be a decent ward against them if you’re trying to enjoy a cocktail outside.


Their tendency to repeat bite is what makes them good disease vectors. They bite other animals or humans infected with whatever and then go finish up on someone else, spreading whatever they picked up.



ETA: you can take the knowledge of their weak flying from defensive to offensive if you want.


https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=6BhV-o77RqQ




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jmitw

I'm getting bit worse on my arms.  I am out every night between 7-9 for 1 to 2 hours.  I spray cutter/off, but they find the smallest spot I miss and go for it..even my face.  I have about 2 dozen on my forearm when I must have missed that area that day.


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Tom

We've had good results using a fan. It throws them off your scent.


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Robert

from Robert Roe:   Nothing new about mosquito problems.  I have old Board of Health meeting minutes from over a hundred years ago.   One of the discussion issues was draining the Seton Hall swamp.   


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ml1

we've also done well keeping the mosquitoes away with fans.


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jeffl
RobertRoe said:
from Robert Roe:   Nothing new about mosquito problems.  I have old Board of Health meeting minutes from over a hundred years ago.   One of the discussion issues was draining the Seton Hall swamp.   

 Let’s keep politics out of this, Bob!


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DottyParker
steel said:
I always use bug spray on myself when I work outside and it works. I'm not sure if spraying poison too often on myself is a good idea but I don't think it's affected me at all, affected me at all. I don't think it's affected me at all or affected me. At all has it affected me not even has it affected me. All.

Look at it this way, you won't have to use it year round.  Once the weather breaks the mosquitoes are kaput.  They don't like the cold.  I loathe them and have no qualms about using Deet on my person. Their relatives, the malarial mosquito, are the biggest killers of mankind.

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/mosquitoes-kill-more-humans-human-murderers-do-180951272/



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