With summertime quickly approaching you are probably starting to think about how you’re going to entertain the kids, get them outside, and off the video screens this summer. Outdoor activities are a great summertime ritual—providing fun for kids and a much-needed break for parents. But nothing ruins plans for outdoor fun like mosquitoes or other insects. The last thing you want to hear is the kids running into the house screaming, “I got bitten by a mosquito!” Suddenly all those fun outdoor activities become indoor chaos. It’s hard enough to get them away from the TV. Once the kids are outside, you have to figure out a way to keep them entertained, or it’s game over, literally.
It’s with this in mind that we devised a way for you to combine entertaining the kids with pest control, all in one fell swoop. The puddle hunt game engages kids, keeps them outside, and helps you get rid of any hot spots where mosquitoes like to lay their eggs.
Eliminating Mosquito Nesting Grounds
One of the best ways to minimize a potential mosquito problem this summer is to be proactive about removing mosquito nesting grounds—like standing water. Eliminating these breeding areas reduces the number of places mosquitos can hatch their eggs, which in turn reduces the number of mosquitos, which means you and your children have a better chance to enjoy outdoor activities this summer.
Mosquitoes live in places like puddles and shallow water. These mosquito havens tend to multiply during springtime as rainwater gathers in bird baths, fountains, plant pots and pool covers. In fact, anywhere water accumulates, and sits is an ideal nursery for mosquitoes to nest and hatch their eggs. This can eventually cause big problems once the weather turns warmer and all those newly hatched mosquitos head out in search of a fresh meal. Removing any standing water in the backyard will go a long way towards reducing the number of mosquitos you’ll be swatting this summer.
Make It a Game
One of the best ways to find all the standing water that has gathered throughout the spring is to create a kind of water scavenger hunt for your kids. Kids love games and are usually always willing to hunt and search for things—think Easter egg, hide-and-go-seek. Making a game out searching for standing water can be fun for them and help you eliminate those less than obvious mosquito hiding places.
This game is one game where the more the merrier. Form teams and foster some good-natured competition by asking the children to identify all the spots where water may have gathered before they turn into mosquito breeding grounds.
One way to ensure good results is to develop a reward system. Children typically respond well to prizes and positive recognition. For every puddle they find and drain, set up a reward such as a special treat, an extra 15 minutes of TV before bedtime, or a half-hour more of screen time. Offering such rewards as well as, an explanation of why the game is so important, will make children feel like they are contributing to the plan for summer fun—you get something in return too!
What Else You Can Do
When it comes to preparing your backyard for summer fun there are a few extra precautions you can take to ensure those puddles and standing water don’t return with the next rain. Drilling small holes in things like tire swings and trash cans will provide an outlet for the water to drain reducing the number of potential homes for mosquito larvae. Maybe offer an extra reward for each bucket of water the kids turn upside down, so it can’t fill with water again.
The puddle hunt game is a fun and engaging way for children to help minimize the number of places mosquitos like to lay their eggs. But if you really want to enjoy a bug-free backyard this summer, contact Mosquito Joe and make the outdoors fun again.