4 Things Mosquitoes Love

Valentine’s Day is almost upon us, and we hope you are finding ways to spend time with your loved ones this year. With this in mind, we are highlighting some things that mosquitoes love. Read on to learn some of these insects’ favorite things (and how to avoid being one of them!):

Standing water

Standing water is at the top of the list for a big reason: this is where mosquitoes breed and lay their eggs. In fact, mosquitoes only need about ¼ inches of water to lay their eggs in. So, how do you avoid an army of mosquitoes in your backyard? Be sure to get rid of any standing water from items such as toys, tire swings, planters, trash can lids, kids’ pools, and more. If you have birdbaths in your yard, change out the water once a week.

Type O Blood

Have you ever heard someone complain that they are particularly attractive to mosquitoes? Well, it turns out they may be right. According to the results of a study conducted by the United States National Institutes of Health (NIH), mosquitoes are more attracted to people with Type O blood than any other type. The study also showed mosquitoes were attracted to Type A blood less than Type O, but more than other blood types. 

While there isn’t anything you can do about your blood type, there are extra precautions you can take, such as making sure to wear insect repellent, to avoid becoming a mosquito’s next meal.

Dark Clothing

Style matters– at least when it comes to avoiding mosquito bites. Mosquitoes rely on their smell and sight to find hosts, and dark colors stand out to them. So, people dressed in dark colors such as black, navy, or red tend to attract a lot of mosquitoes when they are outside. To make yourself a bit less attractive to these pests, try to wear light-colored clothing when you are active outdoors.

In addition to wearing light-colored clothing, wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants when you are outside for a long period of time can help reduce your chance of getting bitten by mosquitoes. The less exposed skin you have, the less room for mosquitoes to bite.

Sweat

It might sound unpleasant, but mosquitoes are very likely to bite someone if he or she is sweating. According to the NIH, mosquitoes are highly attracted to the scent of human sweat because it contains lactic acid. If you are working or playing outside, particularly on a hot day, make sure to apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus to prevent mosquito bites.

Now that you know a little bit about what mosquitoes love, you can better protect yourself and your family by practicing proper at-home mosquito control. By getting rid of standing water, consistently applying mosquito repellent, and avoiding dark clothing, you can reduce your chances of being bitten by mosquitoes.

While DIY mosquito control is good, the best way to prevent mosquito bites around your home and outdoor space is to hire a local mosquito control company. At Mosquito Authority, we guarantee you will have a mosquito-free home and you won’t be bothered by these pests in between treatments.


To find your local mosquito control company, click here.

The Science Behind Mosquito Bites

Ever wondered what happens when a mosquito bites you? Why the bite itches? How to treat the bite?

Everyone knows mosquitoes are a nuisance, but not everyone knows how these creatures work. Despite their small size, mosquitoes can cause a lot of harm– not to mention they are the deadliest animals in the world

Knowing the science behind mosquitoes and their bites is important for us as mosquito control professionals. We also believe it is important to educate our customers on these things in order to practice thorough mosquito control. So, here are some things you might not have known about mosquitoes, their infamous bites, and how to treat them:

Why do mosquitoes bite?

The short answer is, mosquitoes bite to survive. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, female mosquitoes need a blood meal to lay their eggs. In order to get that blood meal, they must feed on humans and/or animals. Because blood meals are only needed to lay eggs, male mosquitoes do not bite people and typically feed off of flower nectar and fruit juices.

What happens when a mosquito bites you?

Mosquitoes have a mouthpart on their heads called a proboscis. Female mosquitoes use their proboscis to pierce the skin of their host and suck its blood. Since male mosquitoes do not need to feed on blood, their proboscis is not strong enough to pierce the skin of a human or animal.

Why do mosquito bites itch?

Mosquitoes are known for leaving a nasty bite when they are done feeding on a host. But what makes a mosquito bite itch? It’s actually very simple: when a mosquito bites a person (or animal), it injects a little bit of saliva into the host. The itchiness that follows is a result of your body reacting to the mosquito’s saliva. 

How do you treat a mosquito bite?

There are a few different ways you can treat a mosquito bite. The CDC recommends the following:

  • Washing the bite with soap and water
  • Applying an ice pack for 10 minutes to reduce swelling and itchiness
  • Applying a mixture of baking soda and water

How can you prevent mosquito bites?

While knowing how to properly treat mosquito bites is important, learning how to prevent mosquito bites is even more crucial. The purpose of mosquito control is to protect you and your family from mosquitoes and the diseases they carry, which means putting an end to mosquito bites. Here are some ways you can prevent mosquito bites around your home and outdoor space:

  • Get rid of any standing water in your yard. Standing water tends to collect in items like trash can lids, tire swings, and children’s toys.
  • Wear insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus when you are outside.
  • Minimize your outdoor activity during dusk and dawn, when mosquitoes are typically most active. 
  • Hire a local mosquito control company

Hiring a local mosquito control company is the best way to ensure mosquitoes stay away from your property. At Mosquito Authority, we use proven treatments to make sure you have a mosquito-free yard. 
Find your local mosquito control company here.

Mosquito-Borne Illness: Malaria

It is no secret that mosquitoes are one of the most bothersome pests on the planet. In addition to invading your outdoor space and ruining your summer fun, mosquitoes are also the deadliest creatures in the world. According to the American Mosquito Control Association, over 1 million people die worldwide from mosquito bites every year. These insects are vectors for a number of diseases such as dengue, Zika, West Nile virus, Yellow fever, and malaria. 

In our last mosquito-borne illness spotlight, we discussed Zika virus. This week we are introducing you to probably the most well-known and deadly mosquito-borne illness in the world– malaria. 

As mosquito control professionals, we want our customers to have all the facts when it comes to these pests and their potential health risks. Here are some commonly-asked questions about malaria and information on how to prevent mosquito bites around your home:

Where are mosquitoes found?

Most people become infected with malaria from the bite of an Anopheles mosquito. Members of this species typically inhabit tropical and subtropical areas of the world, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This is why malaria outbreaks are common in places such as Africa, Asia, and South America.

What is malaria?

Malaria is caused by a parasite that infects Anopheles mosquitoes. According to the CDC, there are four types of malaria parasites that infect humans: Plasmodium falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, and P. malariae. Symptoms of malaria typically include high fever, chills, and other flu-like symptoms.  

How is malaria transmitted?

Anopheles mosquitoes become infected with malaria by taking a blood meal from a previously-infected person. When an infected mosquito takes its next blood meal, the parasites within its saliva are injected into the host. Malaria is not contagious; a person must be bitten by an infected mosquito to contract the disease.

What precautions can be taken to help prevent mosquito bites?

Part of thorough mosquito control is knowing how you can prevent mosquito bites from occurring in your outdoor space. Here are some tips on how you can reduce your risk of being bitten by mosquitoes around your home and outdoor area:

  • Get rid of standing water in your yard. This includes changing the water in birdbaths and emptying items such as trash can lids, tire swings, and toys of water that has collected.
  •  Try to reduce your outdoor activity during the hours of dusk and dawn, which is when mosquitoes are most active.
  • Wear insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus when spending time outside.
  • Use EPA-registered insect repellent products.
  • Keep windows and doors closed to avoid letting mosquitoes in your home.
  • Hire a local mosquito control company.

Mosquitoes are much more than annoying insects. In many areas of the world, they transmit serious and often deadly diseases like malaria. As mosquito control professionals, our goal is to help protect you and your family from these pests and the diseases they carry so you can have peace of mind in your backyard.
Find your local mosquito control company here to prevent these pests from taking over your outdoor space.

Maintaining Your Winter Garden

Maintaining a garden during the winter months can be difficult for anyone, even if you have a “green thumb.” Depending on where you live, there are a number of things you can do to preserve your winter garden. Here are some tips for each region on how to create a thriving garden and maintain it during the winter months:

If you live in the Southwest:

Keeping your January garden healthy in dry regions of the country like this can be tricky. However, as long as you have a good supply of water there are several things you can do to maintain your garden.

  • One thing you can do is prepare for next season. Think about planting seeds for crops such as broccoli, cabbage, onions, peas, and turnips that you can transplant next month. You can also plant asparagus.
  • Make sure to water your evergreen plants often if there is not a good amount of rainfall in your area.
  • If you are looking to add some color to your garden, you can plant flowers that do well in the cool weather such as pansies, petunias, and violas. 

If you live in the Southeast:

Since winters in the southeast region of the United States are mild, you do not need to worry too much about harsh winter weather ruining your garden. Here are some things to do if you are a gardener in the southeast:

  • Add some compost to your garden.
  • Finish pruning your wisteria if you have some planted in your garden.
  • If temperatures drop, use row covers to shelter your plants.

If you live in the Midwest:

Winters in the Midwest are notoriously brutal, so there is not much planting you can do in your garden in January. If you live in this region, your primary focus should be on maintaining and inspecting your garden.

  • Remove snow from around your garden to create a path. This way you will have easy access to your garden so you can clear any debris and check for shrubbery damage.
  • Check your trees for bark damage, which could be a sign that uninvited creatures like deer and voles are making their way into your yard or garden.

If you live in the Pacific Northwest:

The Pacific Northwest climate generally provides good gardening weather because of its moderate temperatures. Here are some gardening tips for those of you in this region:

  • Use row covers to protect plants on cold nights.
  •  If you want to do some planting, go for vegetables such as asparagus and artichokes.
  • Remove dead limbs from trees and complete trimming on your perennials.

If you live in the Northeast:

Much like in the Midwest, there is not much you can do in terms of planting and working in your garden during a northeastern winter. However, here a couple of tips:

  • If you live on the coast, you can assess your plants for salt-spray damage.
  • Just like in the Midwest, clear paths after a snowfall to ensure you have access to your garden.

Working to maintain your garden during the winter can prove difficult in some places, but you will be happy with the results when spring comes around. If you live in colder regions like the Midwest or the Northeast, you should focus on just maintaining your garden and keeping it healthy. On the other hand, if you live in warmer regions of the country, you can start planting some seeds. Read more winter gardening tips at The Spruce.

While you’re working to maintain your garden this winter, remember that certain tick species might be hiding out around your yard. Ticks often hide in life piles, areas of tall grass, and lawn debris, making it easy for them to invade your garden. Click here to find your local tick control company and prevent these pests from invading your garden.


Source: The Spruce

Mosquito-Borne Illness: Zika Virus

Mosquitoes are quite a nuisance during the warmer months of the year. But did you know they can be much more than just an obstacle in the way of enjoying the outdoors? These pests can be highly dangerous, as they are vectors for a variety of diseases such as West Nile virus, malaria, dengue fever, and equine encephalitis.

In our last spotlight on mosquito-borne illness, we discussed West Nile virus, from the symptoms of the disease to how to prevent yourself from contracting it. As we continue our series on mosquito-borne illnesses, this week we are introducing you to Zika virus. 

As a mosquito control company, we strive to educate our customers on the potential health risks of mosquitoes in order to create a happy and safe outdoor environment. Here are some frequently asked questions about mosquito control and Zika virus along with information from the National Pest Management Alliance (NPMA):

Where are mosquitoes found?

While mosquitoes inhabit areas all throughout the United States, some species are more common in specific regions. For example, the Asian tiger mosquito, which can transmit Zika virus, is typically found in the southern and northeastern states. Unlike many mosquito species that feed during dusk and dawn, Asian tiger mosquitoes prefer to feed during the day (NPMA).

What is Zika virus?

Zika is a disease spread primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito of the Aedes species. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Zika outbreaks have been reported in areas such as tropical Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands since the first human cases were detected in 1952. However, Zika cases have also been reported throughout the Eastern Pacific, South and Central America, and the United States.

While Zika virus is usually not fatal, it can have long-term side effects. For more information on Zika virus, visit the CDC website here.

How is Zika transmitted?

As mentioned before, Zika is transmitted through the bites of infected Aedes species mosquitoes. These mosquitoes are also responsible for transmitting illnesses such as dengue fever and chikungunya. Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, which are among the most common mosquitoes in the United States, are the primary carriers of Zika. Additionally, Asian tiger mosquitoes can transmit Zika and are found mainly in Southeast Asia (NPMA). 

What precautions can be taken to help prevent mosquito bites?

Knowing what precautions to take in order to prevent mosquito bites is crucial to proper mosquito control. Here are some helpful tips on how to do this:

  • Use air conditioning and fans (if possible) when you are sitting outside.
  • Use EPA-registered insect repellent products.
  • Always apply and reapply insect repellent when outside.
  • Dress your child in clothing that covers their arms and legs.
  • Use insect repellent that contains DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus on exposed skin.
  • Hire a local mosquito control company.

We at Mosquito Authority aim to give you and your family peace of mind by eliminating mosquitoes from your outdoor space. Apart from being a bothersome pest, mosquitoes also transmit dangerous diseases such as Zika virus, malaria, dengue fever, and more.


Don’t wait until mosquitoes have invaded your backyard to do something about it. Find your local mosquito control company here.