Mosquitoes are known for their annoying buzz and itchy bites. They are blood-sucking pests that can transmit pathogens that lead to illnesses like West Nile virus, malaria, Zika virus, and dengue. They like warm, wet weather, so they tend to thrive in spring and summer. However, what happens to mosquitoes in winter? Should you still get help from pest control experts when it is cold outside?
What Mosquitoes Do in Winter
Mosquitoes cannot regulate their own body heat. Because of this, their body temperatures depend on their environment. Mosquitoes thrive in warm weather about 80 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature drops to 60 degrees, mosquitoes often slow down. These insects won’t be able to function when the temperature drops to 50 degrees. However, they remain alive.
To survive the cold, these pests go into hibernation. The embryos of some species hibernate in eggs, often in ice. As temperature rises and the ice melts, such mosquitoes hatch. The female mosquitoes of other species hibernate after they mate in autumn, inside animal burrows and hollow logs. Some of them stay in a torpor state, without signs of physical or mental activity. These mosquitoes may emerge on warm days in winter.
Activity and Habitat of Mosquitoes
Male mosquitoes feed on plant flowers while their female counterparts also feed on nectar and blood from humans and animals. Once they feed themselves, the females use the nutrients from the blood to produce eggs. As they feed, they inject saliva into the skin of their host, possibly spreading different diseases.
When it comes to habitats, mosquitoes are not too picky. While some mosquitoes prefer to live near people, others choose to live in remote areas. These insects thrive in moist locations such as marshes, tall grasses, and forests. Depending on their species, they may lay eggs in moist soil or water. They can create their homes in big bodies of water or containers full of rainwater.
Making Your Property Less Attractive to Mosquitoes
To prevent mosquitoes from overtaking your property, you should invest in professional mosquito control. Such a program utilizes inspections and treatments using eco-friendly, organic products. Also, you can take steps to make your home less friendly to mosquitoes. These include getting rid of standing water and using natural repellents such as lavender, lemongrass, and marigolds. If your property has a water feature, add moving water such as a foundation, so mosquitoes do not lay eggs on them.