help on mosquitos bothering animals/people : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

We live in southern NC (near Charlotte) and the mosquitos are always bad, but this year they are awful! We do not have any ponds or standing water, but there are 2 creeks not far from our property (have4+ acres but land lays strange). We do have a lot of pine trees which we have been told is a big reason for the pest, and have cut a few down. The goats are having a fit with these mosquitos and we can not do simple chores outside without spraying ourselves down with bug spray. Love to hear any advice you have to offer..

-- Fabienne (, May 04, 2001



-- Eve in FL (, May 04, 2001.

For the humans I suggest getting mosquito suits. I bought one at a sporting goods store. They are a top and bottom which go over your regular clothes. They look like netting. You may have to buy a hood seperately, but make sure it is for mosquitoes and not just a camouflage for hunting. I bought this outfit about 3 years ago when our mosquito invasion was way above normal. I couldn't go outside without being caught in swarms of mosquitoes. I hate spray and this suit is so effective. It is a bit hot to wear over your regular clothes, but much more preferable to sprays. One or two mosquitoes here and there may find their way through, especially where the hood meets the top, there is opening when moving about, but for the most part, I could walk through the swarms without bother.

The animals are a different story. It was so terrible for them. I hated keeping them confined in a closed barn, but outside they just went crazy. I sprayed them down with mosquito repellent especially made for animals. I hate using chemicals, and the chemicals weren't always effective, but preferable to seeing the animals suffer.

I don't know how big your property is, but smudge pots surrounding the feeding area?

Also, do the regular stuff, like make sure there are no standing pools of water. However small, they are breeding areas for mosquitoes. (Places like inside old tires)

Keep the grass mowed short.

-- R. (, May 04, 2001.

Encourage bats in your area. They will come to bugs attracted by a yard light and end up feeding on mosquitoes too. We have closed windows in the evening but left the curtains open to attract bugs and can hear, sometimes see the bats as they fly by the window catching dinner.

If you have bees, think twice about martins. I've read the martins will eat the bees but have no first hand experience there as I don't encourage martins.

-- marilyn (, May 04, 2001.

Though you will have to somehow find a way for them not to foul your goats water, ducks were really the answer for us here. We have now cleared and mowed alot of the property around our house and barns, so the mosquito problem is mainly out in the woods. I am also going to find some more ducks for my woods pen, they will eat through your manure piles (we had donkeys) keeping the place nice looking. The ducks will eat the mosquito larve, cleaning fly larve from manure,we rarely fed our ducks anything. I loved the big pekins because they couldn't fit through our fencing and I could trap them where I wanted to use them. They also didn't fly like the moscovies we had. You could start with a large group, we had about 25, and then you will be able to keep much fewer. We also have bats, which are great for the adults, but you have to do something to clean the larve out of the standing water or you will never be rid of the bloodsuckers. If a mosiquito landed on a goat from a neighboring herd and sucked its blood, and then landed on your doe, and sucking its blood, does the blood intermingle? Could you catch CAE from this? Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, May 04, 2001.

Ditto on the bats and martins....... also ducks, geese and turtles are good at eating mosquito eggs and larvae......if you have heavy woods, is it possible to clear out some younger trees to let some sun in?

Although really heavy infestations are difficult to deal with, there is considerable benefit in creating a personal chemistry that is less attractive to the little buggers. Most bugs, and especially skeeters seem to love the blood of beings who are big sugar-eaters. A lack of B vitamins in your system, particularly B1, also increases your risk. I am totally convinced of the efficacy of generous amounts of garlic in ones system as a mosquito deterrent. I have seen all these dietary elements work time and time again; have experimented in side-by-side trials in skeeter filled woods with people who have agreed to humor me by trying my suggestions, and they really did make a difference.

Good luck! Its no fun working outside when you're being eaten alive!

-- Earthmama (, May 04, 2001.

Bat houses... If you don't mind bats. They will eat 48,000 of the little buggers in a week...

Martin houses... same thing, and cuter.

Skin-so-soft, citronella torches for the patio (if you have one), citronella (mosquito) plants.

Also - and I know its a PAIN, but dump and refill all the water buckets as often as you think of it. It only takes five minutes for a mosquito to lay eggs in them (especially liking the black plastic ones), and the eggs will stick to them, hatching some days later.

Me personally - all of the above... Hate them little blood-suckers!!

-- Sue Diederich (, May 04, 2001.

We don't have any up on this hill, but on our other farm we did. I got pigeons, the tumblers, and I had a coop in the very top of the barn, in the loft. I put a little hole with a sill for them to go in and out. The coop was wire, pretty big so they stayed in there and not just in the loft. I put nesting boxes and everything in there.

You can get them at the flea markets here, about 3-4 dollars each, and mine did have babies pretty good. But you must leave the new ones locked up for a while so they don't fly away. I have heard "If they lay there, they will stay there."

A friend got me three pigeons for my birthday, I left them caged for 3 weeks, then let them out. (they didn't look like tumblers) Well, they circled the barnyard 3 times and then took off straight north and I never saw them again! They were probably homing pigeons that the guy sold over and over! I told my friend for my next birthday just give me the cash and I'll throw it out the window myself. We still laugh about that.

Pigeons are supposed to eat 5,000 mosquitoes a day. Allot of people are into pigeons here in Ky. The poop wasn't really a big deal for me, usually most of it was in the coop, and I opened one side and used a push broom to sweep it down off the loft into the cow stall below, and then just picked it up down there. I would like to have some more pigeons, they are really pretty, and you can tame them really good. And you can always sell the babies after you get a good flock going.

-- Cindy in KY (, May 05, 2001.

For the goats and other livestock, I read a lot where putting apple cider vinegar in the drinking water will stop the problem in it's tracks. Off hand I don't remember the ratio of vinegar to water, but everyone swears by it. Should be easy to look up. Good luck. Carole

-- Carole (, May 08, 2001.

I saw a news special a year or so ago on a new device that controls mosquitoes over an acre's area using harmless carbon dioxide. Turns out that CO2, which humans and all warm-blooded animals breathe out, attracts mosquitoes and biting flies, etc. The device attracts them and sucks them into a bag by the thousands. I haven't tried it, but the link is at for those who are interested. A bit pricey, but over the years, it's probably cheaper than getting bitten, especially in areas of high mosquito density.

-- David Flagg (, January 06, 2002.

I found a cheaper device on the Internet for controlling mosquitoes at Smaller, too, and cheaper to operate. Cheers...

-- David Flagg (, January 06, 2002.

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