Mosquitoes!

Discussion in 'The Rural Life' started by Hobie, Jun 2, 2010.

  1. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    Is there ANYTHING one can do to control mosquitoes when there are beehives in the yard? They are awful this year. I can't even walk out to the barn without being beseiged. I have to put on bug spray in the middle of a sunny day to work in the garden, and I still get bit. And forget about grilling in the evening.

    Best time of the year up here, and I'm trapped in the house as if it were the depths of winter. Argh!
     
  2. cow pollinater

    cow pollinater New Member

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    Mosquito dunks in all standing water is pretty effective and it's safe. They release a bacteria specific to mosquito larva that kills them.
    Bats can really do a number on a mosquito population if you get enough of them. I have two bathouses up on my place and we don't have misquitos anymore although we really never had a HUGE problem with them to begin with.
    Also, talk to your county ag department if you're not oposed to spraying. There's quite a few options out there that will give a good kill in the evening while the suckers are out and the stingers are in. Look for something with a short re-entry period and you won't even have to move the bees.
     

  3. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    I agree with CP on the bats, they will eat their weight in them every night. A couple of bat houses will help bring them in.

    G3
     
  4. Bitty Bee

    Bitty Bee New Member

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    Purple martins will also help reduce the mosquito population, but I think the purple martin houses are kind of pricey. All I know is our neighbor puts 'em up every where and the mosquitoes are terrible until the birds finally move in.
     
  5. XLB

    XLB New Member

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    i know a man that just raises bird house gourds and turns them into bird houses. he puts them out at the beginning of February and then in the middle of april a whole bunch of them move in to ALL of his gourd bird houses. we where just at his house today and we watched all those purple martins flying all over the place.
     
  6. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    The purple martins really put on a good show while I am mowing hay. When I mow the tall grass all sorts of bugs are flying out and the martins will swoop and dive eating the bugs. Some will come within a couple of feet of me, they really are good acrobats!!

    I would think it is not too late to plant some of the gourds for use next year. If you can attract them and they raise some babies in them they will come back every year.

    G3
     
  7. Mama Beek

    Mama Beek New Member

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    XLB has already got gourds growing.... thankfully. Can y'all believe that neither one of my young 'uns told me about the Martins and mosquitos?? (or how pretty they sing and how much FUN it is to stand there and watch them do all kinds of awesome stunts in the air!)

    I try to discourage him because I don't know if it's a good or bad thing.... my hubby likes to go out with a bottle of iodine every so often and drop several drops into all of the standing water places he runs across to kill the skeeter eggs (and who knows what else?) My Momma used to do the same thing only with bleach or dishwasher detergent.

    My oldest daughter puts dryer fabric softener sheets on her kids to keep the skeeters away from them.... i don't know how well it works, but the mental picture of her attaching those things to my EXTREMELY active grandbabies just cracks me up!
     
  8. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    I agree totally with the bats. I had a good population living in the barn (and in my attic!) but this year the numbers are drastically reduced. I'm afraid the white nose virus may have hit their wintering cave. Actually, that is probably why the mosquitoes are worse than ever this year.

    The barn swallows do their best, but the mosquito population is formidable. Just a bad location, I guess. There is a swamp nearby... not sure if mosquito dunks work in a swamp.

    I called the County Health Dept., who works to control West Nile virus. Unfortunately, they have had their budget slashed, and no longer have the people to come out to individual houses and help with traps or spraying.
     
  9. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Purple martins, AKA Bee Martins, eat mosquitoes, HONEYBEES, and other insects on the fly.
     
  10. Walt B

    Walt B New Member

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    This is so weird that I had to post...saw a display at Lowe's at lunch and it seemed to fit this discussion. It's a fan driven Off clip-on...comes complete with batteries. :Dancing:

    http://www.off.com/clip-on-mosquito-repellent/

    Walt
     
  11. Mama Beek

    Mama Beek New Member

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    aaawwwwwuuuuhhhh :cry: that's awful news!!
     
  12. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    Re: Clip-on Off repellant.

    I've seen this before and was intrigued. Then I read in the precautions, "Harmful if swallowed, inhaled, or absorbed through the skin." Inhaled?!? This stuff blows around you in a cloud. I emailed "Off" and asked if I was supposed to hold my breath the whole time while wearing it. Never got a reply.

    I've been researching options. They sell a BT (like mosquito dunks) in granular form that can be broadcast on marshy areas. Would be labor intensive, but may be an option.

    National Geographic also had a bit about a laser that can zap mosquitoes out of the air. It is being developed for tropical areas with malaria prolems. It can apparently identify wing motion patterns, so it will not zap bees and butterflies. Probably not in my budget!
     
  13. cow pollinater

    cow pollinater New Member

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    I donno, I think I might just find a place in my budget for a toy like THAT. :thumbsup:

    Also, if you go the granular route for the bt, may I sugest a hand-crank broadcast seeder? I can really zing fertaliser pellets out at an even rate with mine... Good coverage really fast.
     
  14. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    Hey, I think I have one of those! Thanks for the tip. My biggest problem is spreading the right amount, like when they say "1 lb covers 4000 sq ft." I have no feel for that at all, and often run out of material before I've covered the area. I have the same problem broadcasting seeds.
     
  15. cow pollinater

    cow pollinater New Member

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    Set it really light and spread a small amount over the whole thing and then go back over it with what you have left.... I oughta know.... eighteen of the twenty acres accross the road are quite heavily seeded with white dutch clover. :roll:
    Also, if you can find an area with a large concentration of mosquitoes, a flame weeder can be a whole lot of fun...
     
  16. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    18 acres... with a hand-crank spreader?!? I'm impressed! And I was moaning about 1 acre.... :)

    Not sure if a flame weeder would work... this marshy area is mostly jewelweed and skunk cabbage, which probably contain too much water to burn. I'll be wearing rubber boots and my bee veil to keep bugs at bay. Hope there is no quick sand down there!
     
  17. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    :D Snow ice and cold weather controls mosquitoes best of any thing I have ran across :lol: .

    :mrgreen: Al
     
  18. srvfantexasflood

    srvfantexasflood New Member

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    I bought a mosquito magnet last fall off of Craigslist. (I love a good bargain) One should always read the instructions thoroughly before you need it. This is one of those traps that you hook a portable propane tank up to. You are supposed to turn it on and leave it on. It will eventually break the life cycle of the mosquitos. I have yet to buy the propane tank. I should look into that pretty soon, as we have had about 15 + inches of rain in the last week. A big storm blow through last night and I haven't checked the rain gauge yet today. My yard was standing water before that. It ought to be really soupy today.
     
  19. Monie

    Monie New Member

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    If you have standing water, like I do in the way of several rain barrels, just add some minnows. I actually added them after I hadn't used all of them on a fishing trip. They are doing wonders! And I don't have to worry about the bees getting a dose of a Dunk donut.
     
  20. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    A horse farm that I use to cut hay at would put gold fish in the water troughs to eat the skeeters.