The mosquito is the deadliest animal on the planet. Its ability to transmit life-threatening diseases make it a major health threat, and our efforts to combat it demonstrate the important role pest management professionals (PMPs) play in the protection of public health.
The first line of defense is avoiding exposure to mosquitoes through exclusion efforts (properly sealed entry points); appropriate design of area lighting to prevent drawing them to the property; wearing clothing that will reduce exposed skin; and the judicious use of repellents, among other techniques.
When you consider that the first three life stages of mosquitoes are aquatic, our primary efforts should be directed toward reducing water sources and suppressing the pre-adult stages. When it comes to adulticiding, it is impractical to be focused on eradication as a goal. Mosquito control is an example of a pest management discipline where reducing populations to “tolerable” levels is the standard. And we can go a long way toward that end by also incorporating targeted treatments to those shaded, moist locations protected from the wind that adults prefer as resting sites. There are also some very good trapping systems on the market that offer relief.
We also are looking forward to the introduction of some very promising products that are in development at this time. As always, when combating any pest, the greater the variety of common-sense techniques employed, the better.
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