- There are more than 2,500 varieties of mosquitos (some entomologists claim 3,000) ranging from the Arctic tundra to the tropical rain forests.
- Female mosquitoes have piercing mouth parts and feed on blood. Male mosquitoes only feed on plant nectar.
- It would take 1,200,000 mosquitoes, each sucking once, to completely drain the average human of blood.
- In the Arctic, Canadian researchers who bared their arms, legs, and torsos reported as many as 9,000 bites per minute from swarming, newly hatched mosquitoes. (How would you like THAT job?)
- Once a feeding mosquito is full, a chemical signal shuts down the intake. When that signal is disabled in the lab, mosquitoes suck until they explode.
- Millions of people alive today will die of a mosquito-transmitted disease. Malaria alone claims some 1,000,000 lives a year in Africa. Other top killers include dengue, yellow fever, and West Nile virus.
- Mosquitoes have killed more humans than all the wars in history.
- Beer drinkers are more attractive to mosquitoes. In a 2011 French study, researchers found that drinking 3 cans of beer lead to 30% more mosquito bites. What a buzzkill!
- Mosquito wings beat 300-600 times per second. Hence the incessant buzzing you hear on a summer's night.
- A mosquito develops from egg to adulthood within four to seven days. And once they hatch, they're ready to bite (the females, at least).
In case you’re attending a trivia night and the topic of mosquitoes comes up, you’ll be prepared with these fascinating mosquito facts.
With the upcoming summer season, many families are planning outdoor events but the threat of mosquitoes and the diseases they carry continue to be a worry. These biting insects not only inflict multiple itchy bites upon us, but they can also spread a range of diseases such as, dengue fever, West Nile virus, and the Zika virus. We’ve assembled some tips and hints to protect yourself and your loved ones from mosquito bites.
Mosquitoes are so deadly because of the many diseases they transmit. These diseases are contracted by the mosquito when it bites an infected animal and, in turn, it passes on that malady to the next animal it bites ... and so on.
Some of the diseases attributed to mosquitoes include: Zika virus, malaria, dengue, West Nile virus, chikungunya, yellow fever, Japanese encephalitis, Saint Louis encephalitis, Western equine encephalitis, Eastern equine encephalitis, Venezuelan equine encephalitis and La Crosse encephalitis.
Preventing mosquito bites takes a two-pronged approach: 1) eliminating mosquito breeding sites and 2) protecting yourself and your pets using repellents. Each requires some understanding of mosquito biology.
1. Eliminate mosquito breeding sites
It’s important to know that mosquitoes breed in standing water, no matter how small the amount. A bottle cap containing water can become a breeding ground as well as a stagnant pool, so getting rid of standing water around your property is key to eliminating mosquito problems. We suggest looking out for standing water in flower pots, pet bowls, bird baths, tires, buckets and other containers and emptying them after rains.
2. Protect yourself with repellents
A mosquito can detect carbon dioxide from up to 200 feet from you and once they reach 100 feet away, they’re pretty sure you’re their target.
Mosquitoes are most active at dawn and dusk, so if you must be outside at that time, wear insect repellent. There are various devices on the market that claim to repel mosquitoes and range from citronella candles, wearable repellant devices and spray-on repellents containing DEET.
Keep in mind that your pets are also attractive to mosquitoes, so ask your vet about the specific mosquito repellent that you should use to keep fido mosquito-free this summer.
If you plan to have an outside party, it’s a good idea to run several electric fans as mosquitoes are weak flyers and will be blown away from the area and out of your way.
The very best protection is our mosquito control program to keep mosquitoes at bay around your home.
Call today to learn more, 800-650-PEST
In some 2013 research, 46.1 percent of households in New Orleans reported a pest sighting of some sort. At DA, we treat for virtually any pest problem but we see five pests on a regular basis that seem to us to be the most prevalent in New Orleans. We want you to know about these pests and the threats they pose to New Orleans residents.
1) Formosan termites
A single colony of Formosan subterranean termites may contain several million individuals. Because of its population size and foraging range, the presence of Formosan subterranean termite colonies poses serious threats to nearby structures.
Because of their population sizes and foraging ranges, the presence of Formosan termite colonies pose serious problems.
In New Orleans, where this termite species was introduced in the 1950's, the control and repair costs due to Formosan subterranean termite is estimated at $300 million annually (Suszkiw 1998).
2) German cockroaches
The German cockroach is the cockroach of concern, the species that gives all other cockroaches a bad name. It occurs in structures throughout New Orleans, and is the species that typically plagues multifamily dwellings. The German cockroach is found throughout the world in association with humans.
German cockroaches adulterate food or food products with their feces, physically transport and often harbor pathogenic organisms, and may cause severe allergic responses.
3) American cockroaches
The American cockroach, Periplaneta americana (Linnaeus), is the largest of the common cockroaches measuring on average 4 cm in length. It occurs in buildings throughout New Orleans, especially in commercial buildings.
It is found mainly in basements, sewers, steam tunnels, and drainage systems (Rust et. al. 1991).
The American cockroach is an omnivorous and opportunistic feeder consuming decaying organic matter but will eat almost anything. American cockroaches can become a public health problem due to their association with human waste and disease and their ability to move from sewers into homes and commercial establishments.
Mosquitoes cause more human suffering than any other organism -- over one million people worldwide die from mosquito-borne diseases every year. Due to the recent publicity about the Zika virus, many people are aware that mosquitoes can be detrimental to their health and are taking measures to avoid them. Some of the diseases associated with mosquitoes include: malaria, chikungunya, dog heartworm, dengue, yellow fever, eastern equine encephalitis, St. Louis encephalitis, LaCrosse encephalitis, western equine encephalitis, west nile virus, and zika virus
5) Bed bugs
Bed bugs are parasitic insects that feed exclusively on blood and are one of the most difficult pest problems to eradicate quickly. A number of adverse health effects may result from bed bug bites, including skin rashes, psychological effects, and allergic symptoms. Bed bugs are not known to transmit any pathogens as disease vectors. Certain signs and symptoms suggest the presence of bed bugs; finding the adult confirms the infestation.
Call DA if you see these or any other pests! 800-650-PEST
It’s getting to be that time of the year when our thoughts turn to enjoying the backyard with friends, barbecuing, games and summertime fun! But what you planned to be an enjoyable experience can turn out to be just the opposite because of insects competing for your food and drink! Here are five tips for having a successful backyard party free of annoying insects.
The much publicized Zika virus has now been found in the U.S. including Louisiana. This virus is transmitted to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito, the same mosquito that spreads dengue and chikungunya viruses.
They typically lay eggs in and near standing water in things like buckets, bowls, animal dishes, flower pots and vases. They prefer to bite people, and live indoors and outdoors near people.
Mosquitoes that spread chikungunya, dengue, and Zika are aggressive daytime biters but can also bite at night. Mosquitoes become infected when they feed on a person already infected with the virus. Infected mosquitoes can then spread the virus to other people through bites.
The biggest threat of the Zika-spreading mosquito is to pregnant women who then have a probability of having a child with a serious birth defect.
There is no vaccine or specific medicine to prevent or treat Zika infections. For maximum comfort, treat symptoms by:
The best way to prevent the Zika virus is to prevent mosquitoes with proven treatments like our Mosquito Control Program.
Want to learn more? Click here.
Call us at 800-650-PEST to learn about our mosquito control services!
It’s that time of year again, a time when the sound of hands slapping mosquitoes during the family barbeque is common. Why is it that mosquitoes are attractive more to one person than another? The answer comes down to two words: genetics and smell.
According to the Web MD, genetics account for a whopping 85% of our susceptibility to mosquito bites, and certain elements of our body chemistry make mosquitoes swarm closer.
If one of your parents is a preferred female mosquito meal, then you are most likely a candidate for mosquito attack. There may be some characteristics in your blood that female mosquitoes think are helpful in making their eggs stronger and more fertile
The clue to why mosquitoes feed on some people more than others is also in the chemical attractants and subtle odors that everyone emits, but in different combinations. Recent research suggests that some people have unique compounds and mixtures that mask the “attractive” compounds that mosquitoes like. Such natural insect repellents have a very slight scent that people don’t notice, but that mosquitoes are sensitive to.
Mosquitoes lay up to 250 eggs at a time in standing water that will hatch in 7 to 10 days. If standing water is eliminated weekly, many mosquitoes will be kept from breeding, thus reducing the mosquito population around the house.
Mosquitoes are serious pests but there are measures that can be taken to prevent their abundance," explains Chris Caire of DA Exterminating. "The most important preventive measure is eliminating standing water where mosquitoes breed."
If mosquitoes are keeping you from enjoying your yard, give us a call about our mosquito programs at 800-650-PEST.
John and Mary were awakened one night by the sound of scratching in their ceiling. It sounded like a big creature was running very fast back and forth. They lay awake for hours wondering what could have invaded their home. The next morning, John decided it must be a squirrel. Off to the hardware store, he went in search of squirrel repellent, squirrel traps and anything else he could find. The store employee was helpful in helping find what he thought he needed. So $150 later, he headed home confident that he was armed with the best weapons to take care of the squirrel! He employed all the methods he purchased and went to bed that night, sure that they would not hear more scratching the ceiling. A week passed and every night, John & Mary told each other, “It takes time for these things to work, so we’ll give it another few days.”
Finally, after 5 more nights of scratching, they called in a professional. They did not have a squirrel in the attic, but rather a mouse infestation. The pest control company found chewed wires, mouse droppings and several mouse nesting areas.
The moral of the story: John and Mary spent a lot of money and many sleepless nights trying to take care of the pest problem they did not have. Only the professional could do the job adequately and completely!
While you may be tempted to do your own pest control, it’s not the smartest decision. Incidents have been reported where people used “bug bombs” to try to do their own pest control and ended up blowing up their home or causing serious fires.
There are many elements that we take into consideration when we perform pest control with chemical materials such as: 1. Is it the safest material for the job?
2. Is it labeled for indoor or outdoor use?
3. How often can it be applied?
4. What is the re-entry time for pets and humans?
5. Where is the best place to apply the material?
6. Do we need protective equipment to mix and apply the product?
7. How should the material be stored?
8. Will the material kill or repel the insects?
9. If material is spilled, what is the best way to clean it up?
10. And finally, are we treating for the right pest?
You may save money initially by purchasing products over the internet or in a store, but in the long run, it may cost you more than your initial investment. Professionals like our technicians at DA Exterminating know how to treat your home or business and they’ll service on a regular basis. When doing your own pest control, you tend to treat when you think you need to, and not on a regular basis. If you plan to do it yourself, pest control is one of those things you may forget about or may fall to the bottom of your “to-do” list, whereas we will be sure your house is taken care of regularly.
Lastly, by hiring DA Exterminating to take care of your pest control services, you reduce your exposure to the actual pest control products and ensure that they will be applied where they need to be.
The pest control service from DA Exterminating is a much better value and a more effective solution than the “Do It Yourself Approach”.
Mosquitoes . . . those annoying little blood suckers! If you haven’t been a target of hungry mosquitoes yet this summer, just wait! Because of the excessively warm weather coupled with heavy rains in the New Orleans area, the setting is right for an explosion in the mosquito population in our area.
While local governments work to combat the problem, budget cuts have had an impact on spraying frequency and, in some cases, eliminated mosquito spraying completely. West Nile Virus is transmitted by mosquitoes which is another reason to take action to prevent them. Here is more info on mosquito borne diseases.
According to Chris Caire, Vice President of DA Exterminating, “There are a number of things a homeowner can do to prevent mosquitoes. Local yards are ripe with opportunities for mosquito breeding but with a little effort, you can have a big impact on the mosquito population around your yard.”