With around 3,500 species worldwide, only about 60 mosquito species (family Culicidae), reside in South Carolina. We all agree; mosquitoes annoy us with their presence when we try to enjoy the great outdoors. Other than the constant buzzing and biting, the potential for viruses transmitted by pests is significant. There are numerous viruses caused by mosquitoes. Some of the common ones in the Carolina’s are the West Nile Virus, Eastern equine encephalitis, and heartworm that affect the health of our pets. To learn more about Mosquito-borne diseases, refer to the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control website at https://www.scdhec.gov/environment/envhealth/pests/mosquitoes-diseases.htm
Mosquitoes seek out their blood meal source through our body heat and sweat, carbon dioxide and lactic acid. Only the female mosquito bites through her elongated piercing mouthpart. They suck the blood from humans, livestock and family pets in order to gain proteins that supplement her eggs.
These eggs are found on almost any source of standing water such as ornamental ponds, poor drainage on lawns, bird baths and even empty flower pots. The eggs cling together as they float on the water. They go through the four stages: egg, larva, pupa and then emerge as an adult. These stages can take up to 14 days to complete or as little as 5 days. They are prolific breeders and their lifespan can last from one week to several months if the conditions are right.
What you can do to protect yourself against mosquitoes?
- Remove any form of stagnant water in the yard.
- Fill-in poorly drained areas of the yard with top soil
- Keep roof gutters clean of debris that can retain water
- Replace water in bird baths frequently
- Repair broken windows and screens
- Wear long-sleeved clothing when working in the yard
- Protect your pets with heartworm medication year round
- Apply insect repellants to the skin for short-term prevention
- Hire a professional pest control company that specializes in mosquito control
Summer is just beginning. Enjoy it more this year by preventing and controlling mosquitoes in your outdoor living areas. Call the pros at D&W Pest Solutions to learn about our Mosquito Control Services that protects your family year round against annoying yard pests.