How Fast Are Mosquitoes? How Fast Do Mosquitoes Multiply?

 
One of the best ways to effectively deal with pests is to learn more about them. In the case of mosquitoes, learning how fast a mosquito can fly, how fast mosquitoes multiply, and what mosquito larvae look like can help you figure out ways to effectively keep these buzzing, blood-sucking pests from ruining your outdoor fun.

How Fast Can a Mosquito Fly?

Mosquitoes sometimes seem impossible to swat. They tend to be there one moment and gone the next. So how fast are mosquitoes? You may be surprised to learn that mosquitoes aren’t super speedy insects. They fly at about 1.5 miles per hour. They’re slower than other flying insects like flies and bees. Unfortunately, they’re still fast enough to make swatting at them an exercise in frustration.

How Fast Do Mosquitoes’ Wings Flap?

Though you might not appreciate it while swatting and slapping at mosquitoes, their wings are pretty amazing. Mosquitoes can flap their wings up to 800 times per second. So, if they flap their wings so rapidly, why aren’t they faster?

A lot of that lightning-speed flapping is not for propulsion but for communication. A study conducted by Johns Hopkins University found that when male mosquitoes fly, they emit a low-frequency sound; when female mosquitoes fly, they create a high-frequency noise. This is how they find each other via their antennae, which pick up the sound vibrations. The communication eventually leads to a lot of mosquito eggs. The question of how fast mosquito wings flap is related to how they communicate and breed—it’s all connected.

Related Topic: The Life Cycle of a Mosquito

Mosquito Larvae: How Fast Do Mosquitoes Multiply?

To get rid of mosquitoes, you need to understand their life cycle. How fast do mosquitoes multiply? The answer is: It varies.

Here’s the mosquito life cycle, from eggs to mosquito larvae to adult mosquitoes:

  1. Eggs. Female mosquitoes lay hundreds of eggs every few days throughout their adult life. They lay the eggs on or near water. Water is required for the eggs to hatch. Mosquito eggs can lie unhatched through dry or cold periods and hatch when the conditions are right. If there’s enough water and it’s warm enough, mosquito eggs hatch in about 48 hours.
  2. Mosquito larvae. At this stage, the mosquito larvae swim around, eating, growing, and molting. Mosquito larvae in water are often called “wigglers” or “rollers” because of the way they move.
  3. Pupae. After molting four times, mosquito larvae become pupae. They’re hard to kill at this stage since they don’t eat and tend to hide when the water is disturbed. This stage lasts for about four days but can vary depending on the temperature of the water.
  4. Adult. After the pupal stage, the mosquito has grown and developed into an adult mosquito. It rises to the water’s surface and, when ready, flies off to start the cycle again.

What Does Mosquito Larvae Look Like?

Being able to identify mosquito larvae can help in your efforts to control mosquitoes in your yard. So, what do mosquito larvae look like? They look like tiny, ¼-inch, hairy worms squiggling in the water they hatched in. They’ll often be near the surface of the water and will dive down deeper if the water is disturbed.

This is one of the easiest stages of mosquito development to control. If you eliminate the water they need to survive; you’ll stop the life cycle before the mosquitoes can grow to adulthood.

How to Kill Mosquito Larvae

If you’re wondering how to kill mosquito larvae, there are several things to try, including:

  • Eliminating or emptying areas where water can collect. This includes pet bowls, bird baths, children’s toys, watering cans, and swimming pools.
  • Cleaning your gutters. Clogged gutters allow water to collect. Since they’re rarely disturbed, it’s an ideal mosquito breeding ground.
  • Pruning or cutting down overgrown plants. The shady, moist environment created by overgrown plants can create hatching spots for mosquito eggs.
  • Using mosquito dunks in ponds or other vessels. These contain Bt, which kills the mosquito larvae after they eat it.

For a solution that will protect every area of your yard, consider Mosquito Joe’s mosquito-repelling barrier sprays, where our certified technicians will work to eliminate mosquitoes at every stage of their life cycle.

Got Mosquitoes? Get Help

Understanding the mosquito and its life cycle can help you battle this pest effectively, which will allow you to enjoy the outdoors more often during warmer weather. However, keeping up the fight can sometimes be an overwhelming task, especially if you have a large area to cover with a lot of plants and shrubs. If you need expert help to take back your outdoor fun, contact your local Mosquito Joe. We can help you win the battle with perimeter pests control, gnat control, and natural barrier treatments that can help keep pests away for up to 30 days. Call (855) 275-2563 or request a quote online today.

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The Green Homeowner’s Guide to Creating a Pollinator-Friendly Yard and Garden

 
A pollinator is any animal or insect that carries pollen from the male part of one plant to the female part of another. Some of the most popular examples of pollinators include bumblebees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and bats. Each species plays an important role in the pollination process, though bees tend to be the most relied upon.

Why Are Pollinators Important?

According to an article published in Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, “pollinators and pollination are crucial in the functioning of almost all terrestrial ecosystems including those dominated by agriculture because they are in the front line of sustainable productivity through plant reproduction.” These tiny creatures make such a large impact that, without them, our world as we know it would not exist.

Pollinators are so important that some companies — even those who specialize in insect extermination — have protection management programs in place to help safeguard the environment for pollinators and actively work to protect them.

The Relationship Between Pollinators and the Environment

Don’t be fooled by their name — pollinators do more than transfer pollen from flower to flower. The same article published on ScienceDirect explains that another role of pollinators is to “monitor environmental stress brought about by introduced competitors, diseases, parasites, predators, as well as by chemical and physical factors, particularly pesticides and habitat modification.”

Scientists can analyze these species to better understand the condition of the various crops vital to our food system. When they see signs of a decreasing population, it could be an indication of an increase in pesticides being used for crops. However, in more recent studies parasites, disease, and habitat modification have proven to have a larger impact than pesticides as more land is cleared for additional crops.

The decline in the bee population is so severe that various activists, scientists, organizations, and more made it their mission to spread awareness about the importance of this species. This has led to an increase in the number of bee conservation programs and activities that individuals can take part in to help prevent this vital species from going extinct.

Pollinator Conservation

Coming together both at home and within your community can help spread awareness about the importance of conservation. Protecting these animals and insects is vital to their existence and will benefit our ecosystem as well.

Finding ways to educate others on the benefits of conservation can help spread awareness and understanding about the importance of these species. If you have children, try to engage in more backyard activities, like building a backyard habitat, to capture their attention, get them involved, and teach them about the importance of pollinators. Involve them in the planting and maintenance of your family’s garden. Even suggesting the idea of starting a community garden can be beneficial.

One of the many benefits of educating your children on conservation is that it will teach them habits that will help them make eco-friendly choices as an adult. They can take what they learned as a child and apply it to their future — educating others along the way. Aside from personal development, planting gardens that attract pollinators has numerous benefits. For example, attracting bees and butterflies to your garden and community can:

  • Help signal when something is awry in the ecosystem.
  • Reduce the number of pesticides that are being used.
  • Provide educational opportunities.
  • Help foods and flowers thrive.
  • Contribute to the lifecycle of flowers and other plants.

How to Choose the Best Plants for Landscaping

Not all plants attract pollinators. Some may even do the opposite. This is why it is important to know which plants to choose for conservation landscaping. You will want to find plants that are in season and are compatible with your area. Let’s take a look at which types of plants are most attractive to the various pollinating species.

Bees:

  • Alyssum
  • Anise hyssop
  • Aster
  • Bee balm
  • Black-eyed Susan
  • Butterfly weed
  • Clover
  • Coneflower
  • Cranesbill
  • Poppies
  • Rudbeckia (black-eyed Susan)

Butterflies:

  • Black-eyed Susan
  • Bottlebrush
  • Butterfly bush
  • Coral bean
  • Coral honeysuckle
  • Dill
  • Fennel
  • Firebush
  • Firecracker plant
  • Firespike
  • Gumbo-limbo tree
  • Horsemint
  • Jatropha
  • Lantana
  • Lion’s ear
  • Milkweed
  • Parsley
  • Passion flower
  • Pawpaw
  • Providing water to wildlife
  • Purple coneflower
  • Saltbush

Hummingbirds:

  • Beard tongue
  • Bee balm
  • Butterfly bush
  • Catmint
  • Clove pink
  • Columbine
  • Coral bells
  • Daylily
  • Larkspur
  • Desert candle
  • Iris
  • Flowering tobacco
  • Foxglove
  • Lily
  • Lupine
  • Pentas
  • Petunia
  • Pincushion flower
  • Red-hot poker
  • Scarlet sage
  • Scarlet trumpet honeysuckle
  • Soapwort
  • Summer phlox
  • Verbena
  • Weigela

Like the bee balm and sage, some of the plants are also great ways to help combat ticks and mosquitos.

Tips for Landscaping Maintenance

Just as it is important to purchase plants that attract bees and other pollinators, it’s important to maintain the land around them. Bees and butterflies get their water from puddles and damp soil. If your yard doesn’t allow for that, you may want to consider finding alternative ways to water them.

Installing ponds, fountains, creeks, shallow pans of water, or birdbaths can serve as watering stations for pollinators. However, if you choose one of these options, you must clean them often. Mosquitos and other pests and bacteria are often attracted to stagnant bodies of water. Cleaning a birdbath with a garden hose and non-bleach mixture is a great way to ensure the birds and bees are hydrated, without attracting mosquitoes.

Other ways to ensure your landscape is well maintained are to:

  • Mow often
  • Don’t overwater the lawn
  • Fertilize your lawn, trees, shrubs, and garden
  • Inspect your trees and shrubs for broken branches
  • Pull weeds often
  • Understand what type of soil you have

Pollinator-friendly gardens and habitats will require standard maintenance such as thinning, fertilizing, amending the soil, removing dead stalks, watering, and removing invasive plant species. When attracting butterflies and bees, you might also attract other insects and pests. You can deter these pests by investing in barrier spray services or an all-natural treatment option.

You can always discuss it with a specialist if you are unsure of how to properly maintain your landscaping.

Landscaping Alternatives for Rentals and/or Apartments

Those who live in a rental and/or an apartment may not have as much freedom with landscaping options as those who own their own home. But this doesn’t mean that they can’t have any of the flowers and plants listed above.

Participating in a community garden, making use of planters, and (if able) installing window boxes are excellent alternatives to landscaping while in a rental.

Alternative Ways to Shelter Pollinators

If you’re one of the many who have a difficult time maintaining a garden, don’t worry — there are still ways you can house pollinators without having to maintain landscaping. You can still do your part in the conservation process by investing in bee hotels and butterfly houses.

Serious gardeners and pollinator enthusiasts may even consider taking their conservation a step further and become their own beekeepers.

Beekeeping 101

Beekeeping is commonly taken on as a career. However, some may choose to pick it up as a hobby. But it isn’t as easy as it may look. Beekeeping takes a lot of time, patience, and dedication.

There are a lot of benefits associated with beekeeping. You can have access to an endless supply of honey, make various products out of beeswax, and help with repopulating the species.

However, along with the pros comes to the cons. Beekeeping can get expensive. You have to purchase the right clothing, smokers, hive tools, frame grips, and the bees themselves — all of which can cost on average around $300.

Beekeeping is a serious commitment. Before deciding what you want to do, you will want to be sure that you can provide the bees with everything they need.

Additional Resources and Further Reading

Here are additional resources to help answer any leftover questions about pollinators, how to attract them to your garden, and/or the impact they have on the environment.

Brochures:

Organizations:

Create a Pollinator-Friendly Environment

Creating a pollinator-friendly yard can feel intimidating at first. However, armed with the information above, you can confidently begin your landscaping journey with your pollinating pals firmly in mind. However, when dealing with pests like mosquitoes and ticks, it’s best to call in the pros. Your local Mosquito Joe has the training and expertise to help keep mosquitoes and ticks at bay for up to 30 days. We offer both traditional and natural barrier sprays that can help make your outdoor time fun again. To learn more or to get started, call us at 1-855-275-2563 or request a quote online today!

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Mosquito Repellant Coils: Do They Work?

 
Nothing ruins a fun backyard get-together quicker than mosquitoes. They are annoying and can also transmit diseases that are harmful to both humans and pets. One-way homeowners can combat this outdoor onslaught is to install Mosquito repellant coils. These coils are some of the most common products homeowners buy to deter mosquitoes. These coils, which smolder and emit smoke repel mosquitoes from the area, have a few drawbacks you should consider.

Do Mosquito Coils Work?

Mosquito coils are flattened coils that contain ingredients that repel mosquitos and components that bind it all together and help it burn at a slow, steady rate. Most mosquito coils are pyrethrin-based, though others contain citronella oil or a blend of repellent ingredients.

The coils work like incense. You either hang the coil or attach it to a stake in a secure location, then light the end. The coil burns slowly, from the outer edge to the center, emitting smoke that will either confuse or eliminate mosquitoes, depending on the type of coil used.

But do mosquito coils work? The smoke emitted from the coils can be effective, but very limited. The coils only cover a small area, and if it’s breezy, the smoke will drift away, leaving you unprotected.

Related Topic: Mosquito Vision: Can Mosquitoes See?

Are Mosquito Coils Harmful to Health?

While the components of mosquito coils are all-natural, it’s still valid to wonder about the overall safety of using them. There have been a few studies that have focused on the mosquito coil’s harmful effects.

Here are some of the top mosquito coil safety concerns for humans and pets:

  • One study published in Environmental Health Perspectives indicated that some of the most popular brands of mosquito coils give off smoke that contains known or possible carcinogens, including formaldehyde.
  • The same study notes that the fine and ultra-fine particulate matter in the smoke can irritate the eyes, nose, and lungs.
  • Mosquito coils can also be a fire hazard. Almost every year there are news stories about fires resulting from unattended mosquito coils or coils that have been knocked onto flammable items. If you have kids and pets, you know how easily things can get bumped into and knocked over.

While mosquito coils can be effective for repelling mosquitoes, other options are just as, if not more, effective. Covering as much exposed skin as possible, planting naturally mosquito-repellent plants, such as citronella and lemongrass, and using protective items like screen tents can help.

Your local Mosquito Joe offers natural barrier sprays that are the easiest solution to your mosquito problem. They help keep mosquitoes away for up to 30 days, giving you peace of mind and more time to enjoy the outdoors.

Mosquito Solutions for Your Yard

Enjoying some backyard time while keeping your family and pets itch-free and safe from mosquitoes is possible. Your local Mosquito Joe is ready to help with both traditional treatments and natural barrier treatments that can help make the outdoors fun again! To get started, call us at 1-855-274-2563 or request a quote online today.

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Do Flea Collars Work?

 
Warmer weather offers the opportunity to spend more time outside with loved ones and pets. But the increase in temperature also leads to more pesky insects like ticks and fleas in your yard. Like many homeowners with furry friends, you may be wondering, “do flea and tick collars work to protect my pets?” Fortunately, a wide range of flea and tick collar varieties are available to keep your pets safe through flea and tick prevention.

How Do Flea Collars Work?

There are different versions of flea collars, and each works a little bit differently.

Typically, flea collars are made of plastic and do one of two things: repel fleas or eliminate them outright. Some collars may only provide one function, while others may do both. Either way, the insecticide must be involved for fleas to be repelled or eliminated.

Flea collars that release a strong odor around your pet’s neck repel fleas through the gas coming from the collar. These types of collars tend to be less effective because they only prevent fleas in the area around the pet’s neck, not their entire body.

Other flea collars are designed to release a small dose of active insecticide onto your pet’s fur, slowly spreading across their skin over time and with movement. When fleas and ticks encounter these active ingredients, they are poisoned on contact.

Another type of flea collar releases an insecticide that absorbs into your pet’s fatty skin layer. This causes fleas to die only after your pet is bitten.

Depending on the collar, the active ingredients could include:

  • Flumethrin
  • Imidacloprid
  • Permethrin
  • Tetrachlorvinphos

Related Topic: How to Remove a Tick from a Dog

How Well Does a Flea Collar Work?

There’s much debate on how effective flea and tick collars are. They can be an appropriate preventative measure against fleas and ticks but may not be the best solution for every situation.

Although flea collars are not highly effective when used alone, combining them with other flea control offers better pet protection. For best results using flea collars, experts recommend selecting a brand that contains IGRs (insect growth regulators). IGRs ensure that flea larva doesn’t mature into adult fleas. This keeps flea infestations from reoccurring, as they can do when using a collar that only targets adult fleas and not the larva.

If you’re curious about the effectiveness of a specific flea collar, visit the manufacturer’s website to learn more about the product.

Flea and Tick Collar Safety

If flea collars work by emitting chemicals, are they safe for your pets and home?

Sometimes it can seem like a double-edged sword to protect pets in a safe manner when eliminating pests. Insecticides are necessary to repel and eliminate fleas and ticks, but large doses for an extended time may cause more harm than good.

For example, flea collars containing organophosphates can cause a toxic reaction in pets and people when exposed to them for a long time.

Additionally, permethrin flea collars, which cost less, can be harmful to cats. Felines tend to be more sensitive to permethrin than other mammals like dogs are. In fact, some cats are so sensitive that they can react to permethrin even after casual contact with a dog that’s been treated with it.

There’s even a risk of permethrin overdose when pet owners place flea collars designed for dogs onto a cat. These products can have up to 45% more permethrin than needed to protect your cat. Signs your cat may be having an adverse reaction to a flea and tick treatment include tremors, seizures, and, in some cases, death.

Is a Flea Collar Right for Your Pet?

Most flea collars are recommended for dogs, but do flea collars work on cats too? Yes, there are flea collars that are appropriate for felines, but keep an eye out for any reactions your cat may experience to a new collar. Because they have an increased sensitivity to some flea collar ingredients, cats have a greater risk of skin irritation and other reactions.

Speaking to your veterinarian about choosing the proper flea collar for your pet is highly recommended. Any flea collar can pose some danger to a household with multiple pets, as they may lick or chew each other’s collars, resulting in toxic exposure. But your veterinarian can help you minimize risks and reactions by finding the best collars to meet your household’s needs.

Advantages of flea and tick collars include:

  • Ease of use. Topical flea protection often requires an application and drying time, but with a flea collar, you can protect your pet in the time it takes to secure the collar.
  • Cost-effective. Typically, flea collars provide up to six months of protection at a reasonable price.
  • 24/7 protection. Flea collars stay with your pet and deliver consistent protection.
  • No prescription is required. Most flea and tick collars can be purchased over the counter without a prescription from the vet.

Do Flea Collars Kill Fleas?

Flea and tick collars are designed to kill most fleas and repel ticks. Depending on the type of collar you have, it may only kill adult fleas and not flea eggs (larva) or young fleas (pupa).

It is also worth noting that some flea collars only emitting an odor around the neck are ineffective at killing or repelling fleas, not in the immediate area around the collar.

Flea and Tick Prevention for Your Pets

If your pet spends a lot of time outdoors, flea and tick collars can be a useful tool to keep them safe. While these collars provide some level of protection for pets, they may also raise concerns when you consider the repellant is in direct contact with your pet and easily accessible to children.

If you have such concerns, there is a better alternative. Your local Mosquito Joe offers traditional and natural barrier spray treatments to help keep fleas and ticks off your pets so you can all enjoy your outdoor time. To learn more about how to protect your family and household pets from fleas and ticks, give us a call at 1-855-275-2563 or find a location near you.

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