Avoiding Mosquito Misery

Have you seen any mosquitoes yet this year? The recent rains are creating ideal conditions for mosquitoes to flourish this summer, but it is also the perfect time to stop them. Mosquitoes need standing water to breed so you can have a significant influence on preventing outbreaks in your yard. Take a quick walk around your yard and look for places where water has pooled since the rain. Check yard d├ęcor and look for trash that may have blown in or been dropped in your yard. If you have any items you are storing, check them for water. Tires especially allow water to pool and also tend to conceal the water. Yard toys like shovels or trucks have lots of spaces that can collect water so tip them over to learn which ones store water, and plan to empty toy buckets or pools regularly. If you see a puddle in your yard, keep an eye on it a couple days to see if it drains completely, and consider filling it in. Bird baths with standing water, watering cans, or even a rain gauge can produce mosquitos, but you can easily avoid this if you empty them regularly because it takes several days for the larvae to grow, pupate, and then emerge as an adult. Up to 400 eggs can be laid by a female at one time so preventing them from reaching the adult, biting stage and denying them a place to lay eggs pays off.

What about mosquito spraying?

Madrid does pay for mosquito spraying in city limits in June, July, and August, but working together to avoid puddling water will help more than spraying because spraying only kills adult, airborne mosquitos. If water is available, they have already laid several clutches of eggs so spraying provides a few days of reprieve before the next hatch of bloodthirsty monsters are unleashed to torment the town. Essentially, spraying is most helpful when breeding areas are also removed.

Spraying is done when weather conditions are favorable so dates are not set far in advance. You can sign up for the Madrid app to be notified when spraying will occur so you can keep your windows shut and ensure your family is inside.