How To Get Rid Of Mosquitoes

Lean about the best mosquito control methods with professional mosquito control products.

Most Common Mosquitoes Found in USA

Northern House Mosquito

Culex pipiens L (Northern House Mosquito), common in the northern states. It is found in standing water that is polluted. Typical breeding areas are old tires with water, birdbaths, clogged gutters, and storm drains. *Photo: Fabrizio Montarsi

Southern House Mosquito

Culex quinquefasciatus (formerly Culex fatigans) (Southern House Mosquito) ‐ It is common in tropic and subtropic areas, and common in Florida. They prefer stagnant and foul water for breeding, such as containers with old tires, waste water, bird baths, slow flowing drains and sewer retention ponds. It commonly transmits the St. Louis encephalitis virus and West Nile Virus.

White-dotted Mosquito

Culex restuans (White-dotted Mosquito) ‐ similar to the culex pipiens, but found more in the central and eastern states. Typical breeding areas are in containers, pools, ditches, woodland pools, water with decaying vegetation.

Yellow Fever Mosquito
Yellow Fever Mosquito

Aedes aegypti (Yellow Fever Mosquito).

This mosquito spreads yellow ferver, Zika fever, chikungunya, and dengue fever. This mosquito breeds in containers of water such as aluminum cans, old tires, and tree holes. They bite in late afternoon or early mornings. Eggs may survive for up to a year, and hatch out when flooded. This type has been in the USA for centuries, with similar breeding and habitats of the Asian tiger mosquito, very common in the south. The Asian tiger mosquito has replaced much of its population, but still common in some regions.

Asian Tiger Mosquito
Asian Tiger Mosquito
Distribution of Aedes aeypti
Distribution of Aedes aeypti

United States CDC [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Ae. albopictus (Asian Tiger Mosquito) ‐ This mosquito is a daytime feeder; the females may bite aggressively. They need a blood meal to hatch eggs. They are white with silver stripes (looks like a tiger). Eggs are laid in the clean standing water like cavities of trees, flower pots and bird baths. They do not lay eggs in marshes or ditches. Their larvae are called "wrigglers", as they wriggle or swim through the water, afterward they change into pupae. Adults emerge in 10-14 days after eggs are hatched. They can stay in the winter in egg stages, then hatch out when covered with water during the spring and summer months. The Asian tiger mosquito has become common because they can breed on most any type of water‐filled container. Typically these mosquitoes do not fly more than 1/2 mile but reproduce rapidly. They transmit more than 30 diseases, such as dengue, malaria and encephalitis viruses (inflammation of the brain). First discovered in the USA in 1985 when introduced in imported tire casings imported for recapping.

For More Information: Mosquito Types and Mosquito Habitats

For More Information: Diseases that Mosquitoes Carry

Mosquitoes are frequently in the news because they are both a nuisance and a health threat. It is important to reduce mosquito populations around your home and other living and recreational areas. Mosquitoes thrive in tropical weather but are found throughout the USA. Many species (not all) rest during the day in dense vegetation such as tall grass, weeds, and shrubs. Any successful mosquito control program should target this area.

Get Rid of Mosquitoes

1. Eliminate Mosquito Breeding Sites-Remove Standing Water

Mosquitoes thrive in tropical weather but are found throughout the USA. Many species (not all) rest during the day in dense vegetation such as tall grass, weeds, and shrubs. Any successful mosquito control program should target these areas.

Key Takeaway

Eliminate standing water. Most yards have more of it than you think.

2. Spray Professional Residual Insecticides-To Get Rid Of Adult Mosquitoes

Adult mosquitoes are commonly found in bushes and shrubs because they feed on plant nectar. Many types of adult mosquitoes are found resting in vegetation during the daytime.

  • Trim and get rid of the overgrowth of weeds.
  • To get rid of adult mosquitoes, spray the foliage of bushes and shrubs, lower limbs of shade trees, tall grass, and shaded areas with a residual insecticide.

Spray the suggested residual insecticides:

Bifen IT,Wisdom TC Flowable, , Proflex Encapsulated, or Mavrik Perimeter. Each of these insecticides is a safe, effective, affordable option when applied according to the label. Mavrik Perimeter has the added benefit of not being harmful to bees.

Proflex Encapsulated Solutions combines two insect growth regulators (Novaluron and Pyriproxyfen) and an insecticide (lambda-Cyhalothrin) for superior insect control, lasting 30 days rainfast.

ECO Via is an organic, botanical insecticide labeled for mosquito control if you prefer an organic option.

Mixing an Insect Growth Regulator like Pivot 10 would be ideal as a tank mix to Bifen IT, Mavrik Perimeter, or ECO Via. The Pivot would decrease the number of eggs laid by the adult mosquitoes. When applying insecticides to plants, try to avoid spraying the flowers and blooms if using Bifen IT or Proflex Encapsulated. Avoiding spraying on flowers in bloom will minimize the insecticide's impact on pollinating insects such as bees, butterflies, and moths. After a proper application, you can expect to start seeing results within two to four weeks.

  • Mix Wisdom TC Flowable or Bifen IT at the rate of 1 oz per gallon per 1,000 square feet. If your tank mixes the Pivot IGR, use 4 ml of Pivot to that gallon. We have it in combination products, Mosquito Kits (see below), for more significant savings. For a higher density of vegetation, spray at the rate of 1 gallon per 500 square feet. Repeat applications as needed.
  • Sprayers: Chapin's Mosquito Poly Sprayer, #2014, has a unique fogging/misting nozzle that gives professional results. It provides maximum coverage of foliage for the best in mosquito control.
  • Mix 1 oz of Proflex in a sufficient amount of water (2-5 gallons per 1,000 square feet) to cover 1,000 sq ft in a hand pump or backpack sprayer. Repeat monthly; rain fast. Since it contains insect growth regulators, this is a one-solution product.
  • For best results, spray when the mosquitoes are most active in the cooler hours of the morning or night.
  • Do not spray near ponds or bodies of water.
  • Backpack Sprayers: Professional mosquito companies are now using backpack foggers like the B&G Versa Foggerwith products like Bifen IT for the best application in mosquito control. Unlike a conventional mist blower, the Versa Fogger provides a ULV spray in a particle range for proper control.
  • For ease of use, use Backpack Sprayers

Key Takeaway

Using Insect Growth Regulators (IGRs) significantly reduces the mosquitoe's breeding ability.

3. Using Foggers and Misting System Compounds

We have both high-end foggers and propane foggers to apply fogging compounds for mosquito control. Fogging enables you to coat the leaves and foliage more effectively.

Electric Cold Foggers

Electric Cold Foggers-Pros and Cons

  • You may use both oil or water-based insecticides,both residual and quick kill/contact insecticides
  • A broader range of formulations to choose from.
  • Made be used inside or outside
  • Uses electricity only; limited mobility

Thermal foggers

Thermal foggers work with oil-based insecticides only

  • Golden Eagle Electric Start XL - This thermal aerosol generator is a portable powerhouse for many types of jobs-Formulation Output 0-9 gallons/hr; 0-34 lit

Thermal Foggers-Pros and Cons

  • Bonide's Propane Fogger is economical runs by propane
  • Golden Eagle is a top of the line thermal fogger
  • Can not use water-based insecticides, just oil-based compounds

Water Only Based Insecticides-Use in ULV Cold Foggers or Misting Systems

  • Mosquito Barrier-All natural repellent made of garlic; may be sprayed or fogged. Repels mosquitoes from one day to a month. Mix with water. May be sprayed or fogged.
  • Stryker 5-25, is the same formulation (Pyrethrin 5.0% and Piperonyl Butoxide 25.0%) as the popular Riptide, but more economical. One 64 oz bottle makes 55 gallons for mosquito misting systems. May be used with cold electric foggers to fog rooms, or residential and barn misting systems.
  • Riptide-Same as Stryker 5-25
  • Sector Misting Concentrate-combines permethrin and PBO for both residual and quick kill of flying insects. May be used in cold electric foggers, misting systems, or compressed air sprayers.
  • VamPyre Misting Concentrate-formulated with a 3% Pyrethrum and 30% PBO mixture; used for a quick knockdown and flushing needs. May be used in ulv cold foggers or misting systems.
  • Hyperion Advanced Mist Concentrate-With it Sumithrin and PBO combination, it offers a three day residual and may be applied with handheld sprayers, backpack sprayers, ulv foggers, and misting systems
  • Vector Ban Plus-alternative for misting systems and mosquito control to the expensive pyrethrum based products such as Riptide. Vector Ban Plus contains 10% Permethrin plus10% Piperonyl Butoxide (PBO) and is a water-based insecticide

Oil Only Based Insecticides-Use only in Thermal Foggers (May be diluted with white mineral oil or an odorless light petroleum)

Using Mosquito Repellents

For The Yard

A different method for dealing with mosquitoes is to use repellents. Most people are familiar with repellents sprayed on the skin. Still, there are also non-toxic repellents that can be spread in the yard.  Dr. T's Mosquito Repelling Granules work by masking your scent. These granules confuse the mosquitoes, and they are unable to find you. Mosquito Yard Repellents typically work for about three to five days. This repellent is very popular to use before an outside event.

For The Skin

We carry an all-natural repellent, Natural Insect Repellent with botanical oils and is deet-free.

Prevent Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes can lay eggs in sources of standing water such as:

  • puddles
  • ponds
  • lakes
  • children's toys
  • bird baths
  • ditches
  • old tires
  • clogged gutters
  • buckets
  • flower pots
  • poorly maintained pools

Eliminate or treat these sources with a mosquito larvicide whenever possible.

Even a soft drink can or bottle can hold enough water to produce a surprisingly large number of mosquitoes.

If you are spraying or misting the vegetation for mosquitoes be sure to add an Insect Growth Regulator like Pivot 10 IGR to the mix.

Written by our resident pest control expert Ken Martin.