Spring will soon be arriving across all of North America. The wet winter, in many parts of the country, may make Mosquitoes a real problem. Many communities in the southern United States have noticed what appear to be giant Mosquitoes.
Don’t panic these giants are not Mosquitoes. These giants are called Crane Flies. Despite rumors that these larger flies are predators of mosquitoes, they are not. They are harmless. They do not feed on blood and none of them attack people.
Sadly the internet contains false reports of adult crane flies biting or stinging, they do neither. Adult crane flies eat very little, if at all report entomologists (bug specialists). They may feed on nectar. Their primary focus is on mating when they are in this short stage of their life. They can be gently scooped up and returned outdoors.
Mosquitoes can transmit extremely harmful infections. These can include malaria, yellow fever, West Nile virus, dengue fever, filariasis, Zika virus and other arboviruses, rendering it the deadliest animal family in the world.
The best defense against the mosquito is making sure that we do not provide an optimal place for them to live and reproduce.
Mosquitoes need standing water to lay their eggs. Look around where you live. Almost anything can hold water: Buckets, plant saucers, old tires, a fountain, even a swimming pool. Dump and drain the water once a week or throw away the containers. If you have a pool make sure that the water is treated and not stagnant and stinking.
Get and use insect repellent. Blood is food for female mosquitoes. They need your blood to produce eggs. Look for these active ingredients to keep mosquitoes from biting you: DEET, Picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, IR3535.
Share what you know about controlling mosquitoes with family and friends.
A clean yard, free from containers that can hold water (including plant saucers), is a mosquito-free yard.
Controlling mosquitoes is simple — just get rid of any standing water.