When do mosquitoes come out in Texas?

We get this question a lot and the answer is never the one folks want to hear.  The fact is, in our area, mosquitoes rarely “go in”. Mosquitoes hibernate when temperatures remain under 55 degrees for a full week or we have three deep freezes in a row.  Over the last 5 years, this has happened once, and it lasted for a week.  We then jumped right back up into the 60’s and the mosquitoes were back at it.
In short, mosquito season is really nonexistent in this area of the south. Because of this many of our customers opt to go year-round with their service. Managing mosquitoes in the cooler months can make a dramatic difference when the temperatures start to climb as well. The less mosquitoes in your yard, the less eggs are laid. We often see customers putting off service until April, and then panic in February and call to try and get on our route sooner. Of course, with our no contract model, we always let our customers decide. But we are here to offer advice and suggestions to make sure your yard is a fun place to be.

When are mosquitoes most active?

While our “season” is not so much a season as it is a way of life, there are certainly times when mosquitoes are more active than others. The biggest driver of mosquito activity for us is rain. The more water on the ground, the more eggs hatch. Mosquitoes breed as soon as they hatch, and the females then seek a blood meal so they can produce and lay their eggs. You can go from 10 to over a million in no time flat. When our temperatures are really hot, and the weather is dry, we can actually see a population reduction as the water they need to hatch dries up. Quite the opposite of what many people expect, as they tend to associate high heat with high mosquito population.

In terms of the time of day, mosquitoes as a general rule are more active at dawn and dusk. They are sun-phobic and will seek out the shelter of leaves during the day. However, as with all things mosquito, there are exceptions to every rule. We have several types of mosquitoes, including the Asian Tiger, who are not so bothered by the sun and will happily eat away at you in the heat of the day. If you see a large black and white mosquito in the middle of the day looking for a meal you can be quite confident that you have Asian Tigers.

How can I get rid of mosquitoes?

The easiest way is to call us. But managing your water will bring the greatest reduction for you. Only 1 teaspoon of water will result in 300 mosquito eggs, so don’t overlook the small amounts. Dump all the water you can, turning containers upside-down and paying attention to plant pot saucers and kid’s toys. Since the aim is to also keep your yard as dry as possible (mosquitoes will lay eggs on damp ground if they can’t find water) keep your leaves raked up and ground cover to a minimum (pine needles or anything that will keep the grounded shaded and wet). Don’t forget your gutters as they need to be cleaned regularly and can really be a source for mosquitoes. The tidier your yard the drier!


Preparing for the 2020 mosquito season

Get your mosquito problem under control this year!

Happy New Year!  2020 is one of those years that always seemed so far off, and yet here we are, in the distant future.  2020 is the year of the rat and a leap year. The summer Olympics will be held from July 24th to August 9th in Tokyo.  The world population is expected to be 7,758,156,000.  Amazingly enough, of that population 6.1 billion will own a smart phone. This means that more people will own smartphones than have electricity.

As everyone gears up to start the new year off right, with resolutions and plans firmly fixed, we thought it would be a good idea to help you start the year off with mosquito management in mind.  It may seem like an odd month to be thinking about mosquito control, but changes you make now can have a big impact come spring. In Texas mosquitoes rarely hibernate. Temperatures need to be under 55 degrees for a week, or we need to have three deep freezes in a row for that to happen.  February brings a steady increase to the population, with a major population jump in March. What you do this month can have an impact on that population and make your spring and summer a little less itchy. So, while you are packing away the decorations, and perhaps doing some house sorting, come along with us as we guide you in some sorting outside as well.

Controlling Water in Your Yard

As we always say (and we can’t say it enough) water is your greatest enemy when it comes to controlling mosquitoes in your yard. As the leaves gather and pine needles fill the yard, it is easy to lose sight of areas in the yard holding water. It’s not just water in containers either but moist, dark soil, that will breed mosquitoes. Keeping up on the raking and leaf litter will have a big impact for you. Mosquitoes are not hibernating, so they are busy laying eggs in all those spots. If exercise is on your list of resolutions this year getting out and raking and clearing is a great way to get a workout, and the results truly will make your yard more pleasant come spring.

Once you have all the leaves and pine needles cleared, you can walk your property and spot any potential containers holding water. Plant pots, wheelbarrows, kids’ toys, tarps; anything that holds a teaspoon of water or more will be an issue. Tip over the pots, turn the wheelbarrow upside down and be sure to drain all the toys of water before you put them away. We have had customers with issues in their garage and discovered they put the kids’ toys away full of water, producing thousands of mosquitoes.

Gutters, Drains, and Down Spouts

Another important area to clean are your gutters. It’s easy to forget to look up and all those leaves and pine needles can cause huge issues. Pockets of water along with degrading leaves are a favorite for mosquitoes. If you have tire swings, be sure to drill a couple of holes in the bottom so water can drain out and do the same for your garbage cans as they can hold a lot of water if not closed tight before a rain.

Keeping up with your yard now will make a big difference in the spring. While we don’t clean gutters, Mosquito Joe will take care of all the standing water in your yard. So, if you want to start 2020 off with an itch-free aim, just give us a call. Happy New Year!