Outdoor activities in the summer often involve keeping pests at bay. While camping outdoors in Florida, mosquitos are some of the most obnoxious pests you will come across outdoors. They’re relentless in their quests to feast on blood. There exist over 3,500 species of mosquitos, although not all of these suck on human blood.
Ready to learn how to avoid mosquito bites and the potentially deadly viruses they carry, such as Zika? Here are seven ways to avoid getting bitten, as recommended by Brevard Health Alliance.
1. Get Rid of Standing Water
In just 14 days, mosquitos are able to breed in a few ounces of standing water, such as in a flowerpot. Adding guppies, mosquito fish, or minnows to your pond can help keep mosquito populations down.
2. Use Repellant
Repellants containing IR3535 insecticide, DEET, PMD, or picaridin are effective when used as directed. They’re safe for babies over two months old, pregnant women, and women who are nursing. Lower DEET concentrations are best for children. Just remember not to spray these chemicals around your eyes.
3. Put up Screens and Mosquito Nets
Keep mosquitos outside by using mosquito nets around your bed or by putting screens around your window air conditioning units. For camping trips, consider using mosquito nets that are treated with time-release insecticide.
4. Wear Light-Colored Clothing
What colors do mosquitoes avoid? Dark colors and thin, fitted fabrics attract many insects, including mosquitos. Wearing lighter colors on clothing that is looser and that has thicker material can make you less attractive to mosquitos.
5. Grow a Garden
Some plants repel mosquitoes. Lavender, mint, and lemon balm are natural mosquito repellants. Growing them in your garden can keep mosquitos away. If you really wish to stop mosquitos in their tracks, basil can kill their larvae. And, when mosquito season is over, you can use these plants in your food.
6. Change Your Porch Lights
LEDs are the best lightbulbs for outdoors when you’re trying to avoid bugs. Bug zappers are often ineffective and might even draw mosquitos in. Warm-temperature LEDs repel earwigs and stinkbugs, too.
7. Limit Outdoor Exercise
Body odor, carbon dioxide, and heat are all attractive to mosquitos. Switch to indoor exercise when mosquito season is at its peak so that you won’t get bitten. If you do exercise outdoors, avoid doing so during mosquitos’ peak hours (specifically at dawn and dusk).
You might not be able to avoid these pests entirely, but you can limit your attractiveness. Select the best solution for outdoor mosquitos in your neck of the woods to avoid getting bitten. If you have any questions, be sure to contact Brevard Health Alliance for further guidance about preventing mosquito bites.