People all around the United States end up having to deal with an inevitable summer occurrence: People vs. Pests. Every summer, people have a power struggle of control on land against pests such as mosquitoes, bees and gnats.
Despite the use of bug spray, these pests come back to bother humans each and every year. You may be aware of pest control measures that can help keep critters out of your home, but what can you do when the battle occurs on the pests’ home field – your backyard?
The dangers of insects
What most people do not realize is that the mosquito is the most dangerous creature on earth. Each year, mosquitoes transmitting malaria kill 2 to 3 million people and infecting up to 200 million people. Millions of more humans are killed and infected by other mosquito-borne illnesses such as dengue fever and West Nile virus, which can lead to encephalitis or meningitis, both capable of causing death especially to those over 50 years old and those with weakened immune systems.
In addition to mosquitoes, stinging pests such as wasps or bees also adamantly await their turn to crash your outdoor party if you do not take the right precautions. Although far less deaths occur from bee or wasp stings, they certainly are painful when they sting and can cause a panic among party-goers.
How to pest proof your home
There are many key situations that must be eliminated to prevent these pests from coming back again and again. We made a list of 10 steps to help you enjoy your party with no additional guests!
- Check your screen doors. Pests will want to travel inside to the food source and then follow the food back outside.
- Eliminate all sources of standing water. Standing water is where mosquitoes and other pests breed hundreds of offspring at a time.
- Try to plan your party for the daytime because mosquitoes are most active during dusk and dawn.
- Wear long sleeves or pants that are loose fitting to avoid bites.
- Keep food and drinks sealed at all times, especially after serving.
- Use clear plastic cups for drinks. Cans and bottles provide extra hiding spots for stinging insects.
- It is best to serve food indoors and keep the outdoor space for eating and entertaining.
- When you are done eating, bring the dishware inside and throw it away.
- Throw your trash bags into a covered trashcan away from the party.
- Eliminate especially fragrant flowers or candles from the table because stinging pests are attracted to flowery scents.
For species specific information, be sure to visit our Insects that Bite page.