Posts Tagged Outdoor Living Bug Free

Be In The Know Before You Go

Dread Skeeter Mosquito Control

Dread Skeeter Mosquito Control

Spring is right around the corner, and so is spring break for many schools and universities around the country. Many spring breakers plan to head to the coastline in search of warmer weather during this time. Florida, Cancun and the Bahamas are popular spring break destinations for their tropical climate and beautiful sandy beaches. Spring break in many areas of the country has become a right of passage, for a lot of young men and women this is the first trip without mom and dad. Whether this is the case, or you are planning spring break with the family to an island getaway, with warmer temperatures comes an uninvited guest…….the mosquito.

The mosquito has already reared it’s ugly head in warmer locations around the country and around the world. When you plan your tropical trip make sure you pack plenty of sunscreen, and the bug spray. Many of us plan to travel without taking into consideration the insects that inhabit our destinations. It is a real bummer to go down to the beach on the first day of your spring break or vacation ready to relax and have a good time only to end up covered in itchy red bites a half hour into the day. Thankfully, there are many precautions you can take against these little pests. Keep yourself “in the know when you go”. Remember: knowledge is power and if you are prepared with the knowledge to keep the mosquitoes off you then they won’t have the power to ruin your vacation.

Mosquitoes are at their most active late in the afternoon through early evening. This does not mean they cannot bite at other times throughout the day. If you are planning a hike or picnic or any other activity through or close to a wooded area, for example, at lunchtime, the probability of getting bitten if not protected is highly possible. Mosquitoes will retreat during the warmest part of the day to cooler spots such as a wooded area, or natural setting to avoid direct sunlight and extreme heat. This means they can still bite in a vast array of settings, even during the middle of the day.

Mosquitoes are also attracted to us by carbon monoxide. The more buddies you bring to that beach volleyball game before dinner unprotected will more than likely end up as the buffet item for the nearby mosquitoes. As you participate in any strenuous activity you take deeper breaths, and breath heavier, when you exhale there is more carbon monoxide, thus attracting the mosquitoes

Dead mosquito - Mosquito Squad kills mosquitoes dead

Dead mosquito - Mosquito Squad kills mosquitoes dead

All is not lost folks, don’t trade out your reservations to Key West to head to Colorado or Montana. Like I mentioned earlier “be in the know before you go”, this means thinking ahead and making sure you are prepared. Make sure you pack a good quality insect repellent. Make sure when applying the insect repellent it is applied after the sunscreen. Also make sure to pack long pants, a jacket and a hat, if planning outings near the woods or forest. If sleeping in non air-conditioned or non screened areas make sure the facilities you are staying at have nets to sleep under. It is also a good idea in some areas to spray the net with insect repellent.

Planning your spring break abroad to assure you are mosquito bite free is easy. Even if you aren’t planning on traveling and deciding to stay home for spring break, these same precautions are smart to use if the mosquitoes have hatched in your necks of the woods. If planning any backyard activities it is also a good idea to have a licensed professional treat the area. Give your local Mosquito Squad representative a call, they will ensure you can have a vacation anytime in your own backyard, now -go have some fun.

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Long-term treatment with antibiotics is controversial

Mosquito Squad kills ticks dead

Mosquito Squad kills ticks dead

Lyme Disease is the most common tick-borne illness in the northern hemisphere. It is a bacterial illness caused by a bacterium called a spirochete. Here in the United States the bacterium is called Borella burgdorferi. In Europe the bacterium Borelia afzelii, also causes Lyme disease. Lyme disease is spread by deer ticks bites that harbor the bacterium.  The tick itself carries the bacterium in its stomach.

Once an infected tick bites a human and the individual contracts the disease it can cause abnormalities in the skin, joints, heart and nervous system. These abnormalities can last weeks and in some cases, symptoms can persist for years. Lyme disease is not contagious from person to person contact of an infected individual. Lyme disease has been reported in all 50 states, and is on the rise. More than 150,000 cases of the disease have been reported to the Centers for disease control (CDC ) since 1982.

Lyme disease made its first documented appearance in 1975 in Lyme, Connecticut. Researchers reported that a group of children all living within close proximity of each other were all reportedly diagnosed with Rheumatoid arthritis. This unusual occurrence led researchers to discover the bacterial cause of the children’s condition, and led to the identification as being referred to as “Lyme disease” in 1982.

Dread Skeeter of Mosquito Squad helps prevent tick bites by killing ticks in your yard

Dread Skeeter of Mosquito Squad helps prevent tick bites by killing ticks in your yard

Lyme disease affects different areas of the body in different ways. The location of the tick bite itself usually, but not always, displays a reddish-spreading rash, this spreading rash is usually accompanied by flu-like symptoms. This rash can also resemble a “ bulls eye” with a ring of brighter redness. The redness will go away without treatment, in a short period of time. Subsequent diseases of the heart, joints and nervous system can then occur. The longer the disease is left undiagnosed, the more debilitating the effects can be. Lyme disease can lead to heart failure, paralysis, confusion, peripheral neuropathy and severe arthritis. The late phases of the disease are more difficult to diagnose and treat. Symptoms of the disease can sometimes last for years even after the disease itself is cured. In severe cases long term use of antibiotics and other drugs may be necessary. Treatment can also be challenging due to the diseases diverse manifestations.

Long term treatment of Lyme disease, and Chronic Lyme disease has become the source of much debate. The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) has recommended against long tern treatment of Lyme disease with antibiotics. Some groups of patients and doctors endorse the long-term treatment of the disease with antibiotics even though there is medical evidence that opposes it. Some studies have indicated that the use of long term antibiotics is not only costly, but inefficient and potentially harmful. The overuse of antibiotics can cause drug-resistant conditions that are either difficult or impossible to treat. Patients suffering from chronic Lyme Disease are rallying for better drugs for long term sufferers and better testing to catch the disease earlier.

Mosquito Squad stops ticks dead in their tracks

Mosquito Squad stops ticks dead in their tracks

The best precaution against Lyme disease would be prevention and control. Since the deer tick often hides in shady moist ground covering at the larval and nymph stage, and then during the adult stage clings to weeds, grass and brush; keeping your lawn and garden free of the tick itself would be priority number one. Keeping your lawn and garden area tidy and clean, mowed and not overgrown is a good place to start. Once this has been done, a licensed professional can spray the residential environment. Another safeguard is to always check your clothing and body carefully after every outdoor exposure, especially during the hot weather months. Parents should check their children thoroughly. If you find a tick,  don’t panic. If possible put the tick in a vial or jar of alcohol to kill it. If you do find a tick attached to your skin, remove it properly without jerking or twisting the tick.. Keep in mind that studies of the deer tick show that they begin transmission of the disease itself 36-48 hours following attachment. The sooner the tick is removed your chances of contracting the disease are greatly reduced. Clean the bite area with disinfectant, Watch the area for the appearance of a rash (this usually takes between 3-30 days) and pay close attention to any flu-like symptoms. Contact a physician immediately at the onset of either a rash or if you begin to feel badly after the bite. Lyme disease can be easier to treat if detected early.

Check for a Mosquito Squad location near you to have your yard, lawn, and garden sprayed throughout the tick months to prevent your family, friends and pets from getting Lyme Disease and other tick-borne and mosquito-borne illnesses.

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Malaria is the cancer of Africa

Help Mosquito Squad raise $30,000 in 30 days to save thousands of children

Help Mosquito Squad raise $30,000 in 30 days to save thousands of children

We hear the word cancer and we get a shiver down our spine. We find out that a friend or family member has cancer and we tremble knowing there’s a good chance they won’t live. In Africa, this cancer is Malaria. But, unlike cancer, Malaria is preventable and treatable. Then why is it killing so many people? Of the million people in Africa who die of Malaria each year, most of them are small children.

Here in the United States, we eradicated Malaria back in 1951. It’s completely treatable if it’s caught early. But, as we know prevention is the best cure. Malaria is carried by mosquitoes. These mosquitoes feed mostly at night while families and young children sleep. The best way to prevent night-time bites from disease-carrying mosquitoes is to cover the beds with bed nets. These nets are only $10. They could cover a bed where there’s only one infant or there may well be several children in that bed that are then all protected by the bed net.

 

Help Dread Skeeter of Mosquito Squad get rid of Malaria

Help Dread Skeeter of Mosquito Squad get rid of Malaria

Mosquito Squad is partnering with Malaria No More to help eradicated Malaria in Africa. We are helping to raise $30,000 in 30 days but we need your help. A bed net that could save one life or a whole family’s life is only $10.

 

Donate $10.

Just $10.

Donate today by texting “SWAT” to 85944. You will receive a text message asking you to confirm your $10 donation.

Donate today.

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Abandoned Pools Pose Big Threat

Across the country over the last couple years, the once fun and relaxing neighborhood swimming pools are quickly turning into the breeding ground for mosquitoes and West Nile virus. As I read through some of the stories posted on-line, I was surprised to see some of the figures surrounding this idea.

 In California alone: “California officials estimate that there are tens of thousands of abandoned pools in the state”

 Another troubling sign to emphasize the failure to maintain pools is the overall drop in sales: “A pool builder in north Phoenix who estimated business was off 40 percent to 70 percent. Business is just as bad in Florida, where builders like Ben Evans, the chief executive at American Pools and Spas in Orlando, said he had let much of his staff go as orders for pools dropped to 150 this year, from about 1,000 the previous year.”

If I was a baby mosquito, that’s where I’d want to grow up!

If I was a baby mosquito, that’s where I’d want to grow up!

These abandoned pools have turned into a mosquito breeding paradise. As a result cases of West Nile Virus, even in densely populated cities, are rising at alarming rates. Actions are being taken to solve this problem by treating the pools, but with so many our there it is a tough battle that will take time.

 Mosquitoes travel up to one mile from their original breeding grounds. To protect your yard and your family from being at risk, as about a Mosquito Squad barrier spray for your home. Enjoy the outdoors without the worry or risk!

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West Nile Virus Explodes Across U.S.

2009 has been a major year for pests. Mosquitoes have spread the West Nile Virus through over 35 states in America already, with new cases springing up in Washington D.C., Maryland, and Wyoming within the past month.

WNV_0408_09_a

With the majority of U.S. states having cases of West Nile Viruses, chances are you live in one of these areas. Since West Nile Virus is spread through mosquitoes, the best thing you can do is avoid mosquito bites. To help you do just that, try these easy tips from the CDC:

  • Many mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn. Be sure to use insect repellent and wear long sleeves and pants at these times or consider staying indoors during these hours.
  • Make sure you have good screens on your windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out.
  • Get rid of mosquito breeding sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets and barrels. Change the water in pet dishes and replace the water in bird baths weekly. Drill holes in tire swings so water drains out. Keep children’s wading pools empty and on their sides when they aren’t being used.
  • All of those tips can help fend away mosquitoes, but if you want a surefire way to get rid of the threat is by using Mosquito Squad. The eco-friendly spray will protect you and your family from mosquitoes, and more importantly, West Nile Virus.

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    Mosquitoes Can Carry a Tune

    In a recent experiment, scientists discovered that the type of mosquito responsible for yellow fever and dengue also “duets” prior to mating. The Science magazine study provided the first piece of evidence that mosquitoes can hear. The experiment also revealed that the insects adjust their wing beats to a frequency an octave and a half below a standard “A.”

    The scientists conducted the study by tethering mosquitoes and playing tones to them through a minature microphone. They hope that their findings will bring new understanding to mosquito mating patterns and hearing capabilities.

    To read the full article, click here.

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    History of a Pest

    So, from my last blog, you now know all about mosquitoes-from their body structure to their life cycle. But when were they first documented? How long have they been around? How did they get their name?

    mosquito

    Facts about Mosquito History:

    -The Spanish called the mosquitoes “musketas,” which means “little fly.”

    -The native Hispanic Americans called them “zancudos,”  which means “long-legged.”

    -The use of the word “mosquito” is apparently of North American origin and dates back to about 1583 (http://www.mda.state.md.us/mosquito/mosquito.htm).

    -In Europe, mosquitoes were called “gnats” by the English, “Les moucherons” or “Les cousins” by French writers, while the Germans used the name “Stechmucken” or “Schnacke.”

    -In Scandinavian countries mosquitoes were called by a variety of names including “myg” and “myyga” and the Greeks called them “konopus.”

    -In 300 B.C., Aristotle referred to mosquitoes as “empis” in his “Historia Animalium” where he documented their life cycle and metamorphic abilities.

    -Modern writers used the name Culex and it is retained today as the name of a mosquito genus.

    -What is the correct plural form of the word mosquito? In Spanish it would be “mosquitos,” but in English “mosquitoes” (with the “e”) is correct.

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