Reduce Landscape Mosquito Factories

The Asian tiger mosquito (ATM, Figure 2) is a peridomestic species, meaning it is adapted to live in and around human dwellings. Everyone can play a major role in reducing numbers of this fierce day-biter simply by recognizing potential breeding sites and taking steps to remove or alter them so they cannot support mosquito development.

Figure 1. Asian tiger mosquito (Susan Ellis, Bugwood.org)

Figure 1. Asian tiger mosquito (Susan Ellis, Bugwood.org)

ATM breeds in natural and artificial containers. A recent study in New Jersey identified tires, trash cans, and planter dishes (Figure 2) as the most important artificial breeding sites for the species. However, anything that can hold water for 10 to 14 days could produce a batch. Discarded containers pose a significant problem because the desiccation-resistant eggs of container breeding mosquitoes can wait for rain to provide the needed water for development. See Mosquitoes’ Main Aquatic Habitats for an expanded list of potential breeding sites.

Figure 2. Top artificial containers that serve as mosquito breeding sites: tires, trash cans, and planter dishes. (Photo: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Figure 2. Top artificial containers that serve as mosquito breeding sites (from left to right): tires, trash cans, and planter dishes. (Photo: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

 

By Lee Townsend, Extension Entomologist

Posted in Human Pests