Many mosquito repelling methods may be myths

Don Ames
July 06, 2017 - 9:02 am

We're likely facing a buggier-than-normal summer for mosquitoes, due to our mild winter and warm, wet spring. 

Unfortunately, there's not much you can do, other than get rid of standing water, to mosquito-proof your yard.

Local folks will employ various tactics to keep the little buggers at bay. But, likely to no avail.

LSU entomologist, Dr. Kristen Healy, doesn't see claimed insect-repelling lights doing much good.

"When we collect mosquitoes we use LED light bulbs or UV light bulbs or incandescent bulbs," says Healy. "So, we actually use that in trapping mosquitoes as an attractant."

As for planting so-called insect-repellent plants; "There isn't enough evidence to suggest that planting some of these plants in your yard will prevent mosquitoes."

And, she say the same goes for scattering coffee grounds in your yard.

"I do my own composting in my back yard," Healy says. "We use coffee grounds and I've never seen it repelling any mosquitoes in my own back yard."

The one thing you can do to reduce the mosquito population is, of course, eliminate standing water in your yard. 

"The fact that the immature stages live in water actually makes it a great target for controlling them," says Healy. "Because if you can eliminate water, then you can, theoretically eliminate mosquitoes."
She says doing something is better than doing nothing.

"But, we'll always recommend selecting EPA registered repellants, because they've been tested."

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