Two of the most annoying and potentially dangerous Mosquito species in Missouri are the Aedes Mosquito (commonly referred to as the Asian Tiger) and the Culex Mosquito. Mosquitoes are unpleasant and annoying. Their bite can cause skin irritation, red bumps, and itching due to an allergic reaction from the saliva they inject as they suck your blood. BUT, there can be a much more serious consequence from mosquito bites. Mosquitoes can transmit certain diseases such as: Zika Virus, West Nile Virus, Heart Worm, Malaria, Yellow Fever, Dengue Fever, and several forms of Encephephalitis. Mosquitoes are considered to be one of the most deadly animals in the world!
Mosquito Biology Basics
- Approximately 3,000 species of Mosquitoes in the world, 200 species in the United States
- Aedes (Asian Tiger) and Culex Mosquitoes are two of the most common species in Missouri
- Aedes Mosquitoes are daytime feeders while Culex Mosquitoes feed around dawn & dusk
- Mosquitoes are attracted to exhaled carbon dioxide, body heat, movement, sweat, perfume, cologne, skin lotions, and other odors
- 4 stage life cycle: egg, larvae, pupa, and adult. Can transform from egg to adult within 2 weeks
- 100 to 400 eggs can be laid at a time in “rafts” on the surface of water as little as ½ inch deep
- Pre-adult Mosquitoes remain in the larvae stage for about 7- 10 days & require standing water
- Larvae will develop into pupa and will become adults within a few days
- Male and female Mosquitoes eat nectar, fruits, and other plant sugars for their nourishment
- Only the female Mosquitoes bite and extract blood which is used for protein for her eggs
- Average life span of a male Mosquito is about 10 days and female Mosquitoes up to 8 weeks
- Can fly up to 3 miles but often stay within several hundred feet of where they were hatched
- Adult Aedes Mosquitoes and many other species die in the winter leaving only their eggs
- Adult Culex Mosquitoes can hibernate and survive winter including their eggs
Identify and eliminate standing water/ breeding sites such as: clogged ditches, temporary pools and puddles, tree holes that hold water, old tires, buckets, potted plant trays and saucers, plastic covers, clogged gutters, bird baths, pet water bowls, or any other area or item on your property that collects water. Drain all items or containers that can hold water weekly.
Personal Prevention Tips
Use insect repellent when going outdoors containing Deet. Cover bare skin (especially around ankles) with light colored – loose fitting clothing. Screen open windows and doors. Avoid being outdoors at dawn and dusk, avoid traveling to affected areas (especially pregnant women).
Mosquito Reduction available from Steve’s Pest Control
Reducing Mosquito populations is a multi-faceted approach that requires treatment spring – fall. We will first inspect your property to identify Mosquito breeding sites. Since some species of Mosquitoes can breed in as little as a ½ inch of water, we will locate and inform you of these areas so that they will remain free of standing water. In areas that retain standing water such as lakes, ponds, ditches, and other areas that collect water that cannot be drained, larvicides will be used. These larvicides stop the larvae stage from maturing to biting adults. Steve’s Pest Control will implement Mosquito Reduction Treatment approved by The World Health Organization during the season (April – October) by applying both an adulticide and IGR outdoors to breeding, resting, and foraging sites on your property. Although this is clearly Mosquito reduction and not complete elimination, we can make a significant impact on this problem. If you’re not completely satisfied with one of our Mosquito Reduction service programs, we will perform re-treatment at no charge. One-time treatments are not under warranty.