Around the House: Ensure Mosquitoes Aren’t Among Invited Backyard Guests
By Yehudit Garmaise
While July is prime time for inviting family and friends to grill, eat, play, and sing outside, mosquitoes can ruin the fun when they buzz in uninvited.
By making a few simple efforts, lovers of the great outdoors can prevent mosquitoes from crashing summer backyard parties.
Eliminate standing water: Brooklynites should walk around their properties and ensure that absolutely no water can collect anywhere. Mosquitoes breed and lay eggs in standing water, and even something as small as a turned-over bottle cap can collect enough water to attract mosquitoes, which especially like to hide in anything that is black in color.
Make sure to put away all shoes, toys, baby pools, gutters, buckets, tires, and whatever can collect rainwater that attracts mosquitoes.
Regular maintenance, like treatments and circulation, is mandatory for pools, which otherwise will attract mosquitoes.
Wear layers, long sleeves and long pants or skirts: to prevent mosquitoes from biting your skin. Just as clothing protects you from the sun’s harmful rays, layers can also keep bugs away from your skin.
Patch up any holes on window and door screens to prevent mosquitoes and other bugs from entering your home.
Aerosol mosquito repellents can help to keep the bugs away, the sprays also can contain harmful chemicals, such as permethrin and DEET, and therefore should only be sprayed on clothing and not directly on the skin.
You can bypass harsh chemicals completely in your quest to deter mosquitoes by creating a simple, homemade mosquito trap that kills mosquitoes.
Homemade mosquito traps emit carbon dioxide, which apparently attracts female mosquitoes, so they can be killed before they can lay their eggs, says the American Mosquito Control Association.
To make “the ultimate mosquito trap,” you will need a cardboard box, a black bucket, hot water, one packet of yeast, 2 T. brown sugar, and a drop of Dawn liquid.
Add a quart of hot water of 120 degrees F. to your black bucket, which activates the yeast and releases carbon dioxide, and add two T. brown sugar and mix. Then, add one packet of active dry yeast “to attract the mosquitos” and a drop of Dawn liquid soap to “make the water slippery and breaks the surface tension of the water so when the mosquitoes land on the water, they drown,” says Drag, in his video on how to build your own mosquito trap.
Then, place your bucket into the cardboard box, and leave the box open so the mosquitoes are tempted to check out “the dark water, which is the perfect condition for trapping them.”
Put your box in a dark corner, and then check it a few days later to see the masses of mosquitoes you have eliminated.