Empty Bird FeederCalifornia Needs Water Not Mosquitoes

Warm winter, now (finally) rain, may soon mean more mosquitoes for California. Mosquitoes breed in standing water, so most people know to store buckets upside down. What few realize however, is how little water mosquitoes really need. Alameda County Mosquito Abatement puts it best:

“If it can hold water for more than a few days, it can breed mosquitoes.”

Most mosquitoes have a flight range of 1 to 3 miles, but the Asian Tiger Mosquito–the species that carries West Nile Virus–has a very small flight range. So if you’re in your yard and get bitten,  standing water is no more than 300 feet away.

The time for mosquito prevention is now. If warm weather returns, you can expect to see a new crop of mosquitoes 4 to 14 days after the rain stops. To prevent mosquito breeding grounds, tour your yard and look for anything that catches and holds rainwater. Start with these often overlooked places and items left out of doors:

  1. Downspout diverters
  2. Frisbees
  3. Massaging spa sandals
  4. Solar garden lights
  5. The bucket lip of upside down buckets
  6. Candle holders/garden art
  7. Outdoor furniture tubing
  8. Umbrella stands
  9. Garden hose holder pots
  10. Empty bird feeders

Have you found an unusual mosquito breeding ground? Please add it to the comments below.