Arizona Mosquitoes Arriving This Spring
As the Spring season in Arizona begins, so does the Arizona mosquito season. Once the temperatures begin to warm up, mosquitoes begin to move into Arizona. The rains of the cool season, and the storms of the Summer monsoon season, provide enough moisture for mosquitoes to continue to breed throughout the region. During dry spells, canals, ponds, and washes begin to dry up, reducing water flow and resulting in more stagnant water, producing prime for mosquito breeding spots. Warmer weather that begins to move in during March will mark the beginning of the Arizona mosquito season, and they won’t leave until the weather begins to sufficiently cool again in November. Mosquitoes will annoy, bite, and spread disease during these warmer months in backyards, parks, trails, campsites, and everywhere in between, unless you take the appropriate steps to mitigate a mosquito problem.
Arizona Mosquito Prevention Tips
There are several things you can do to help keep Arizona mosquitoes at bay this summer. Taking these steps won’t completely prevent mosquitoes and their bites, but each step taken can help reduce mosquitoes in the area, or from making a meal out of your or your pets.
For Your Yard
- Remove items from the yard that inadvertently collect water: Items that inadvertently collect water such as old tires, toys, buckets and other containers provide a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Ensure that these are stored in a dry place where water cannot sit and become stagnant, allowing mosquitoes to breed. Even small amounts of water can provide a spot for mosquitoes to reproduce, so make sure that your yard is free of water-collecting containers.
- Clean/maintain items that do collect water: If you have areas or items that intentionally collect water, such as birdbaths, pools, ponds, or other bodies of water, ensure that the water is well maintained and kept clean. You can purchase devices to keep water moving to disrupt mosquitoes from breeding, or use chemicals that will stop mosquitoes from breeding in that water.
- Keep gutters and drains clean: Gutters and drains are a prime mosquito breeding area. These can quickly become clogged or blocked, giving mosquitoes prime real estate in which to lay their eggs. Cleaning these on a regular basis will ensure one less area for these pests to reproduce.
- Maintain water lines: Check for and fix leaks on hoses, sprinkler systems, valves and faucets. Also, ensure the condensation runoff from your air conditioner is not collecting and pooling. Eliminating any sources of unneeded still or stagnant water will reduce the number of opportunities mosquitoes have to breed.
- Use natural mosquito repellents: Another good idea is to grow plants that naturally serve as deterrents to mosquitoes. These include catnip, lavender, marigold, peppermint and basil. This non-toxic method will allow you to beautify your surroundings (and provide some herbs for the kitchen!) while keeping the mosquitoes at bay.
- Turn lights off & use bug lights: Keep any outdoor lighting off when not needed to avoid attracting mosquitoes into your yard. Yellow “bug light” bulbs emit color at lower wavelengths and temperatures, so they aren’t as visible to to insects as typical light bulbs.
For Your Body
- Don’t go out in the morning or the evening: Mosquitoes are least active during the afternoon, but more active in the morning and evening when there is some shade. Choose to go out in the middle of the day if you want fewer bites.
- Use repellant: We recommend something that has 20% DEET in it to repel mosquitoes. Non-chemical options include picaridin or oil of lemon-eucalyptus. Reapply repellant as directed on the label.
- Wear long-sleeved shirt and pants: This can give mosquitoes less areas of skin to attack. However, be aware that mosquitoes can bite through some materials.
- Light-colored clothing: This will make it harder for mosquitoes to lock onto you. Mosquitoes can more easily see dark colors than lighter colors.
- Avoid perfumes: Mosquitoes can be attracted to sweet or fruity smelling perfumes, soaps and shampoos. Use fragrance-free products to reduce your appeal to mosquitoes.
How do Mosquitoes Survive the Winter
The mosquitoes that survive the cold weather do so by hibernating, just like some animals do during the winter. Mosquitoes that hibernate throughout the winter will come out in the spring time to begin sucking our blood and the blood of our pets once again. It is an annoying occurrence that is difficult to remedy and not an important item on our list of issues to handle at the moment. Mosquitoes that do not survive the winter temperatures leave eggs behind that will hatch with the first breeze of warm spring air.
How do Mosquitoes Hibernate
Some mosquitoes will hatch in the fall and hibernate as larvae; they find shelter in the bottoms of muddy pools to protect themselves from freezing. Mosquitoes that find a way to last through the freezing winter temperatures seem to be even more aggressive than those who seasonably show up in the spring time. Mosquitoes not only pack an annoying bite that can itch for a long period of time, but mosquitoes also can carry dangerous diseases that are harmful to you and your family.
Arizona Mosquito Control
Though there are many things you can do yourself to help prevent mosquitoes from ruining your time outdoors, the most effective method is a mosquito control treatment from a professional pest control expert. At Bug Guardian, we use a backpack sprayer designed for precise application, our technicians target shrubs and plants with a barrier spray that kills mosquitoes on contact and bonds to foliage. Within 30 minutes of spraying, your yard is ready for family and pets to come out and play. Our technician will also help to identify problems areas that may pose as mosquito breeding grounds and offer additional tips specific to your property to prevent additional mosquito outbreaks.