Although you tend not to see many mosquitoes in winter, mosquito control in Atlanta is a year-round activity. Mosquitoes become inactive below 50 degrees, but they do not simply die out. They are alive and well, hiding away waiting for warmer weather in the spring. Even so, you can take steps now to reduce their numbers come March and April.
Mosquitoes in Winter
Have you ever wondered why so many mosquitoes suddenly seem to appear on the first warm spring day – as if they had never been away? It’s simply because they have never been away! They have been hiding, waiting for the weather to get warmer – and so have their eggs.
Mosquitoes lay their eggs in water, often in the form of rafts of hundreds of eggs. These eggs can lie dormant for months when the temperature drops – and then hatch when it becomes warmer. Occasionally, you can have a few warm days in late fall and early or late winter, and you can find a swarm of mosquitoes when you don’t expect them. It’s important to identify those areas around (or even in) your home where these eggs can be quietly waiting for spring or even sooner. Then you can deal with them before they hatch.
While it is unusual to see adult mosquitoes in winter, you can reduce the likelihood of a mass invasion come spring by cleaning up around your yard. There may be areas outside and inside your home that could be a habitat to dormant mosquitoes and their eggs. Less than a cupful of standing water can breed a whole army of mosquitoes just waiting for you on the first pleasant day in late winter or early spring.
Atlanta Mosquito Control in Winter
In late fall and early winter, check your yard and areas around your home for standing water: water that has nowhere to run off. Atlanta is known as the worst Metro area in the USA for mosquitoes. That is because of all the rivers, creeks and other waterways in and around the city. You might, therefore, think it a waste of time removing one discarded dog bowl or tin can from close to your home – but it’s not!
Mosquito colonies by the vast Chattahoochee River – and even their little tributaries like Nancy Creek River – spread throughout Fulton, Cobb, and Gwinnett Counties, and the Sweetwater and Peachtree creeks are not so sweet when you feel the bites. Metro Atlanta is home to many colonies of these insects, and as they spread across the city they will breed in any containers capable of holding water. Examples are old food cans, disposable cups, pet bowls, bird baths, watering cans, fountains, ponds, old auto tires, drains and roof gutters, particularly when blocked with fallen leaves. You can find mosquito eggs in depressions within your patio, your driveway, around the edges of your home, garage and shed. Even that plastic sheet or tarp you put over your pool can hold small areas of standing water – enough for a whole raft of eggs.
Controlling Mosquitoes in Winter
Controlling mosquitoes in winter involves ensuring that your spring infestation is minimized. Your winter work should include checking your entire yard over and removing the above items. You should also inspect the sides of buildings and walls for small areas of standing water near the ground level.
Check the bottom of fence posts where water can accumulate. You are not looking for a lot – even a spoonful is enough to breed a raft of mosquito eggs! Carry out a complete clean-up of any areas where mosquitoes might breed. Look for small pale rafts of eggs and destroy them or flush them down a drain. They can survive in wet grass or shrubbery until ready to hatch so don’t just throw them out of the container.
Automated Mosquito Spray System
If you want to be genuinely ready for springtime, then set up an automated mosquito spray system. Such systems spray your shrubbery at regular intervals and play a significant part in reducing the likelihood of new hatchlings surviving to make spring a misery. These systems don’t require operatation over winter, but are ready to be activated once the seasons change. A combination of a good inspection and clean-up around your home in winter, and being proactive with your mosquito control system, will reduce the possibility of an early infestation of mosquitoes in your yard.
It is all largely a matter of common sense. Controlling mosquitoes in winter does not involve dealing with adults, because there will not be many of them – if any! It involves preventing eggs from hatching by removing those areas and receptacles in your yard that could be home to their eggs over winter.
Mosquitoes in Winter: Summary
Mosquito control in Atlanta is not easy – particularly if you live close to a river, creek, lake or even small pond. However, you can make it easier with an automatic spray system that may prevent newly hatched or hibernating mosquitoes from entering you yard. Controlling mosquitoes in winter often involves such proactive thinking, and if you look ahead at what might be coming to you then the work needed should be worth it.