Each year, the American Mosquito Control Association (AMCA) designates one week in June as National Mosquito Control Awareness Week. Anyone living in South Florida is reminded of the need to keep these winged pests at bay nearly every time they step outdoors during mosquito season, which in our area extends from late February well into November.
When you consider the serious health threats mosquitos pose in our region, all efforts to control them are worth encouraging. One approach to mosquito abatement that’s growing in popularity is the use of mosquito traps. The variety of traps designed to keep mosquito populations under control makes finding the best mosquito traps for your needs challenging. Here’s a look at your options when choosing the optimal mosquito-defense approach for your home.
How Mosquito Traps Work, Inside and Outside Your Home
In the never-ending battle of human vs. mosquito, nearly every item under the sun has been tested as a mosquito deterrent, from lavender and lemon eucalyptus oil to citronella candles and ultrasonic blasters. Unfortunately, most of these approaches provide little or no benefit.
By contrast, mosquito traps have been proven to be effective in trapping and killing a significant number of mosquitoes, although their effectiveness depends on several factors, including:
- The total mosquito population in your area.
- Your proximity to mosquito breeding habitats.
- The species of mosquito you’re dealing with.
- The type of mosquito trap you’re using.
Most mosquito traps work by mimicking the large, warm-blooded creatures that are the bugs’ favorite meal. Mosquitoes are attracted to the carbon dioxide that humans and other animals exhale and are drawn by body heat. These are the most common types of mosquito traps:
- Heat traps generate a thermal heat plume and use an intake fan to suck in any mosquitoes that come near.
- Ultraviolet light traps use a small fluorescent or LED ultraviolet light, usually in conjunction with heat or carbon dioxide to attract the mosquitoes.
- Propane-powered traps burn propane to generate heat and emit carbon dioxide along with a fan to draw in any mosquitoes that fly nearby. Since these traps are portable, they can be used anywhere.
- Carbon dioxide traps use propane or a compressed gas cylinder to emit carbon dioxide that mimics a human’s exhaled breath.
- Glue boards are a component of many mosquito traps. They’re used along with a mosquito lure and intake fan and are intended to make the bugs they trap easier to dispose of.
How to Find the Best Mosquito Trap for Your Home
In addition to understanding the method used by the trap to draw and capture mosquitoes, choosing the best mosquito trap for your needs depends on the trap’s coverage area, how the trap is powered, where you place the trap, and whether the device is intended for use indoors, outdoors, or both.
- Outdoor traps use carbon dioxide, heat, and UV light as attractants, and they may also include scents to mimic human odors. The devices can capture a great number of mosquitoes before their holding chamber has to be emptied.
- Indoor traps depend on heat and light to attract the insects because chemical odors can be unpleasant indoors, and emitting carbon dioxide can pose a health hazard inside your house. These traps usually include a glue board to make it easier to dispose of the dead insects.
Electric mosquito traps are simple to set up and maintain by regularly replacing their glue board, cleaning the collection chambers and vents, and replacing their UV bulbs every 3 to 6 months. Propane traps require slightly more maintenance because you have to refill the propane tank regularly, and cleaning their traps takes more time due to the high volume of mosquitoes they trap.
Bob Vila’s picks as the best mosquito traps are the DynaTrap Extra Large Insect Trap for outdoor use and the Tysonir Electric Mosquito Zapper, which can be used indoors and outdoors. The top choices in The Spruce’s review of mosquito traps are the DynaTrap ½ Acre Insect and Mosquito Trap for indoor or outdoor use and the Flowtron BK-15D Electronic Insect Killer.
At Nozzle Nolen, we use In2Care mosquito Buckets, which you can learn about here:
Are Mosquito Traps Your Best Abatement Option?
If you think mosquito traps are a set-and-forget solution to your mosquito problem, think again. In addition to emptying, cleaning, and otherwise maintaining the traps, you also have to make sure the traps are correctly positioned in your yard or home and that they catch the type of mosquito that is prevalent in your area. The AMCA notes that some traps capture high numbers of certain mosquito species while attracting only a few of other species.
Even the best mosquito traps won’t allow you to put your repellant away because there will always be a few sneaky biters that elude them. Most importantly, the traps must be used in conjunction with a comprehensive mosquito abatement program that identifies and eliminates mosquito breeding grounds on and near your property. This will include:
- Placing screens on standing water sources such as rain barrels.
- Disposing of cans, bottles, and other containers that may collect standing water.
- Checking to ensure that gutters and drains are unclogged.
- Keeping lawns, bushes, and other landscaping trimmed.
- Look for areas of standing water on your property after rainfalls.
No mosquito trap will banish the crafty winged attackers for good, and even the most effective mosquito traps require a lot of time and effort to set up and maintain. Compare the DIY approach to mosquito control with the benefits of signing up with a professional pest control service such as Nozzle Nolen to keep the mosquito population in your vicinity in check.
Nozzle Nolen’s mosquito-control strategy combines misting areas where mosquitos nest, which is in the foliage or at the tree/shrub line, along with the use of highly effective In2Care mosquito traps. The treatments are part of the company’s 365 Complete Home Protection Plan, which provides year-round protection against mosquitoes and other pests that plague South Florida homeowners, including termites, wasps and bees, rodents, cockroaches, and bed bugs.
Getting Started With Nozzle Nolen
Our motto at Nozzle Nolen is, “if the pests return, so do we.” With our No Pest Guarantee, If a pest problem occurs between your quarterly treatments, the company’s certified pest control technicians will respond within 24 to 48 hours to address the matter. To find out more about how Nozzle Nolen can help solve your problem with mosquitoes or other pests, schedule a free evaluation.
Nozzle Nolen has been providing professional pest control for residents in South Florida for more than 70 years. If you would like more information on the best mosquito traps or would like your property treated, give us a call at 800.226.6535 or Contact Us. We look forward to serving you.