The first line of defense against mosquitos is to seal their point of entry. Mosquitos are most active in the early morning and early evening. They seek areas of still air because they are hampered by breezes. Close windows and doors on the side of your house which are opposite the breeze. Then try:
- The most important measure you can take is to remove standing water sources. Change birdbaths, wading pools and pet’s water bowl twice a week. Keep your gutters and rowing clean and well-draining. Remove yard items that collect water.
- In a New England Journal of Medicine study, oil of eucalyptus at 30% concentration prevented mosquito bites for 120.1 minutes, while Bite Blocker with 2% soybean oil kept bites away for 96.4 minutes. (the eucalyptus oil must have a minimum of 70% cineole, the active therapeutic ingredient, content.) Citronella, a common alternative to DEET, performed poorly, warding off bugs for only 20 minutes.
- If you’re using the barbeque, throw a bit of sage or rosemary on the coals to repel mosquitos.
- For an effective natural bug repellent mix one part garlic juice with 5 parts water in a small spray bottle. Shake well before using. Spray lightly on exposed body parts for an effective repellent lasting up to 5 – 6 hours. Strips of cotton cloth can also be dipped in this mixture and hung in areas, such as patios, as a localized deterrent.
- Neem oil is a natural vegetable oil extracted from the Neem tree in India. The leaves, seeds and seed oil of the Neem tree contain sallanin, a compound which has effective mosquito-repellent properties. Neem oil is a natural product and is safe to use. Look for new Neem Oil-based commercial products on the market.
- Planting marigolds around your yard works as a natural bug repellent because the flowers give off a fragrance bugs and flying insects do not like.
- Safe, non-toxic pheromone-based mosquito traps are now commercially available.
In Pomáz we have a mosquito problem – there are lots of them and they love to bite. Along with the other challenges we face, such as water provision & conservation, energy generation and crop-growing, we will have to find ways to deal with these pests. We plan to attack them on all fronts – their marauding forces and their home bases – all windows and doors will have additional screens fitted, our water storage containers will be sealed tightly with mesh screens and we intend to cut down the number of standing water sources (as best we can). We’ll try to repel as many of the beasts as possible and to this end here are a few resources that suggest ways to achieve this:
Update; more resources
- Pesticide-Soaked ‘Wallpaper’ Cuts Malaria Exposure, Safer Than Spraying