(BPT) – Summer is here, which means you can count on two things: warm weather and mosquitoes.
From backyard barbecues and neighborhood get-togethers, to baseball games and trips to the beach, families all over the country are spending more time outdoors enjoying the weather.
As concerns about the spread of mosquito-borne diseases increase, it is important to take proper precautions to avoid mosquito bites and stay informed on the best ways to keep you and your family protected.
“As the world’s largest, privately owned urban entomology research lab, we have over 60 years of experience studying insects,” said Dr. Tom Mascari, researcher, SC Johnson Entomology Research Center (ERC). “Seven days a week, 365 days a year, we study about 20 different species of insects – including six species of mosquitoes – which makes us leaders in this field and solidifies our commitment to educate families on how to stay protected.”
Dr. Mascari and his colleagues at the ERC offer these helpful tips so that you can enjoy your summer and stay protected from mosquitoes.
Remove standing water. Mosquitoes breed in standing water, so removing it from your property can reduce their numbers. Rain gutters, buckets, bird baths or fountains with stagnant water are all possible breeding sites.
Plan activities outside of peak mosquito hours. Mosquitoes bite at any time of the day, but many types are most active around dusk and dawn. If possible, schedule your outdoor activities to avoid these times, and have personal repellent on hand to protect yourself and your family.
Apply a pest pretreatment to your yard. A pretreatment product, like OFF! Backyard, helps protect your yard from mosquitoes and other insects. Some product applications kill insects on treated hard, non-porous outdoor surfaces for up to eight weeks. Always read product directions prior to application.
Apply personal repellent. Applying a repellent, such as OFF!, can help protect you from mosquitoes. Choose among pump sprays, aerosols and towelettes that contain active ingredients such as DEET or Picaridin.
If you plan to wear sunscreen, apply sunscreen first and then insect repellent over it.
Wear appropriate clothing. Choosing the right clothes can help reduce mosquito bites.
When weather permits, wear long sleeves, long pants and socks when outdoors.
Mosquitoes can bite through thin clothing, so spraying clothes with an insect repellent will provide extra protection.
Consider wearing light-colored clothing as mosquitoes can be more attracted to dark-colored clothing.
Use spatial repellents for an added layer of protection. Area mosquito repellents such as OFF! candles, lamps and foggers are used to reduce encounters between humans and mosquitoes in a broad area, including outdoor seating areas or around the yard.
As always, be sure to read the label directions of any product before use.
For more information from our experts and entomologists on how to protect your family, please go to www.scjohnson.com/mosquitoes.