One good thing about the end of summer and the beginning of winter is the disappearance of mosquitoes. Many people are sad to see the warm weather leave as the cold weather sets in, but the lack of mosquitoes in the air is definitely an upside to winter.
But have you ever wondered what happens to the mosquitoes in your yard when winter comes around? A common belief is that mosquitoes simply die off in the colder months of the year. However, this is not always the case.
The Mosquito Life Cycle
To understand what really happens to these insects when the temperatures outside drop, we have to first understand their life cycle. Most mosquitoes go through four life stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, one of the most common species of mosquito in the United States, overwinter in the egg stage.
So what does it mean to overwinter? This means that female Aedes aegypti mosquitoes lay their eggs prior to temperatures dropping in the winter. Mosquitoes only need half an inch of water to lay their eggs in, which is why getting rid of any standing water in your yard or outdoor space is a crucial part of mosquito control.
The adult mosquitoes will eventually die off after breeding and laying eggs; however, their eggs can survive throughout winter by going into a state of diapause, meaning their development is paused for a few months. When temperatures eventually start to rise again, the eggs will resume development and hatch.
Adult Mosquitoes in Winter
According to the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), whether or not a mosquito lives through winter depends on its species. Some species can overwinter as adults by hiding in places like logs or holes in the ground (NPMA).
By finding warm places to hibernate during the colder months of the year, female mosquitoes can delay laying their eggs until spring comes around again. This overwintering process, for both adults and eggs, means mosquitoes can get a headstart in the spring when it comes to invading your backyard.
Preparing for Mosquitoes Ahead of Time
At Mosquito Authority, we take every step possible to ensure your home is mosquito free– and it stays that way. Here are some tips on mosquito control in the winter and preventing mosquitoes from surviving the cold months:
Get rid of any standing water in your yard
Mosquitoes need water to breed and lay eggs, but they do not need a lot. Because these insects can lay eggs in as little as half an inch of water, it is important to get rid of anything in your yard that could collect and hold water.
Declutter your yard
There are a lot of items that can hold water if left out in a yard, including tire swings, trash can lids, and wheel barrels. Remember to consistently empty these items of any standing water and replace birdbath water frequently.
Use mosquito repellent
When spending time outdoors, make sure to apply mosquito repellent containing DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus.
Mosquito Authority takes all aspects of mosquito control seriously, from ridding your yard of these pests to ensuring they don’t have places to breed. Contact us for more information on our services and find a Mosquito Authority location near you!