Everything is bigger in Texas. Unfortunately, that includes the mosquitoes. The Gulf Coast region is especially prone to dense mosquito populations. The summer is peak mosquito season, which means it’s time to start taking extra measures to manage exposure as much as possible.

Take a look around your house. Is your property a haven for mosquitoes? If your home is hospitable to mosquitoes, it can easily become a breeding ground for them, creating more and more of the pesky insects.

To deter mosquito breeding, drain any standing water. Most species of mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant water.

Stagnant water can gather in:

  • Discarded tires
  • Ditches or trenches
  • Industrial containers
  • Clogged storm drains
  • Natural low points on your property
  • Pottery
  • The saucers under flowerpots
  • Trash and litter, such as aluminum cans
  • Garbage can lids

If you have a swimming pool, cover it when not in use and keep it clean and chlorinated. Ornamental pools should be aerated to keep water moving, which deters mosquitoes from laying eggs. You can also stock the pond with fish that eat mosquitoes. Items that are supposed to contain water, such as birdbaths and pet water bowls, should be dumped out and have fresh water added at least twice a week.

Once you have the standing water taken care of, it’s time to bring out your John Deere mower! Mowing your yard regularly and keeping weeds away from your home’s foundation helps make your yard less hospitable to mosquitoes. Another thing you can do is replace your outdoors lights with yellow “bug” lights. They don’t repel insects, but mosquitoes and other pests aren’t as attracted to them, making them less likely to take over your yard. And don’t forget to keep an eye on your window and door screens to make sure there are no gaps or holes that need repairing.

If your area is extremely prone to mosquitoes, you will likely have to be even more proactive. You may want to consider one of the insecticides available for homeowners. A light spray around building foundations, shrubs and grasses will keep mosquitoes from resting in those areas.

There are several solutions for dealing with mosquitoes, but there are a couple of things that aren’t worth the money. Bug zappers are not recommended for mosquito control. Mosquitoes usually make up for less than 1% of bugs zapped, and many beneficial bugs get shocked instead. Citrosa plants are another item that experts say won’t help. While citronella oil has mosquito-repellant properties, the plants don’t.

Now that you have some ideas, get out there and battle with those mosquitoes! Mosquito control isn’t just beneficial to you and your family, it helps your whole community. Working together with your neighbors to get rid of as many mosquitoes as possible will help keep your community healthier and happier!