Essential Tips For Keeping Mosquitoes Out Of Your Backyard Water Features

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Water features such as ponds, fountains, and birdbaths can make your outdoor space more relaxing and beautiful, but they are likely to attract mosquitoes to your backyard. These pesky, biting insects lay their eggs in water, making your pond the perfect home. By adjusting the environment of your water feature, you can make it less hospitable for the larvae and banish mosquitoes from your yard. Introducing natural predators, such as fish, to the water feature and removing food sources are also great ways to cut down on mosquitoes.

One easy way to do this is by ensuring that the water isn't stagnant. When water is moving, it makes it harder for larvae to survive and the mosquitoes will look for a better spot to lay their eggs. For example, if these annoying insects are swarming your birdbath, you could try adding in a bubbler, like the mini solar powered birdbath pump on Amazon for $13. You might also consider trying to add a DIY stunning waterfall feature to enhance your pond and repel these insects.

Getting mosquitoes out of water features naturally

Since 1 oz of stagnant water is able to support mosquito larvae, the easiest way to keep them out is to install a pump or a fountain in your pond. You can find the Tetra pond pump, which can handle ponds with up to 1000 gallons of water, at Lowe's for $44. If you have standing water anywhere else in your yard, such as rain that's pooled in trash cans or planters, eliminate it to help get rid of mosquitoes in your yard. Because this insect's larvae can use plants, algae, and debris that falls into your water feature as food or shelter, it's a good idea to keep your pond or fountain clean with a skimmer and remove any unnecessary vegetation from the water.

Additionally, changing the landscape of your water feature may also help to get rid of these pesky insects. Making your water feature deeper can deter mosquitoes, as the larvae do best in water that's 2-ft deep or less. You might also consider making the edges of your pond steeper in addition to making the water deeper, as this makes it difficult for the mosquitoes' larvae to safely hatch.

Keeping your backyard water features free of mosquitoes with predators

If your pond is full of plants you don't want to part with and keeping the water moving isn't cutting down the mosquito population enough, consider adding fish. Mosquitofish, or Gambusia affinis, love to eat mosquito larvae and, depending on where you live, you may be able to get them for free from your local government. While these fish can be good for mosquito control in ponds, they should never be transferred to lakes, streams, or any other natural body of water, as they could disrupt local ecosystems. Minnows are also known to eat mosquito larvae and can be a great addition to backyard ponds.

Attracting other natural mosquito predators, such as dragonflies, could also help to control these pests around water features. This may mean that you'll need to stop using insecticides, which kill helpful insects as well as the annoying mosquitoes. If none of these methods seem to get rid of the mosquitoes, try using a natural larvicide that contains Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti). This control method uses bacteria spores that kill mosquito, fungus gnat, and black fly larvae. BTI is a great control method that should not harm any fish or other helpful insects.