Everyone looks forward to warmer months when they can spend evenings outdoors, but as the temperature rises, so does the mosquito population.
Good news: We don’t have to let these pesky insects ruin our backyard parties. To get a head start on bug prevention, we spoke with Tuxedo Mosquito Control owner Robert Pittman and company founder David Maddox about what can be done to mitigate mosquitos.
What mosquito control treatments does your company offer?
DM: No. 1, our automated misting systems, and No. 2, a spray service where a technician treats the property with a product designed to kill and repel mosquitoes. The products are a synthetic form of crushed chrysanthemum flowers. The other option is an essential oil-based product that is a more organic option.
What other ways homeowners can keep mosquitoes from breeding?
DM: Paying attention to your yard is very important because mosquitos need stagnant water to breed. The little plates you put under your plants on the deck, bird feeders and children’s toys that collect water [are culprits]. It’s important for the homeowner to make sure those things are either dry or rinsed out on a regular basis. And make sure you keep gutters clean because the leaves and debris will cause dams that create habitats for mosquitos.
DM: We start de-winterizing our misting system customers in March to get them out in front of the mosquito problem and start our spray service in April.
Why is it important to start early?
DM: Female mosquitos are the ones that bite, so we want to interrupt that life cycle and keep them from laying eggs in our yard. Eggs can be dormant for up to two years waiting for a water source, and once they get a permanent, stagnant water source, they pop out as adult mosquitos. It only takes enough water to fill a bottle cap to breed a huge number of mosquitos. RP: If you let your mosquito population build up in March, April, May and June then your July, August and September will be exponentially worse because you haven’t done anything to interrupt that life cycle.
What does your company do to minimize the effect on pollinators?
DM: We spray at times when the pollinators are not actively foraging for food therefore protecting pollinators. RP: We position nozzles away from pollinator areas, and the way we apply the spray with backpack blowers allows us to avoid flowering plants.
Contributing home editor and design columnist at Simply Buckhead. Travel & Business Writer. Mother of Two.