Faye-Prince trap

How to use Traps to Improve Your Natural Mosquito Service Options

Mosquito traps can improve customer satisfaction & reduce call backs

If you offer backyard mosquito and tick service long enough, you will encounter “that house”. You know the one. The one with the backyard that no matter what you do, the mosquitoes keep coming. 

They come like a plague each night around dusk, and they drive the homeowners crazy.

Maybe it is beside a wetland, or surrounded by rice fields, or maybe it is at the low spot in the neighborhood. Whatever it is about this backyard, it turns into a mosquito feasting-ground each night.

What can you do? You have tried all the natural mosquito control techniques you can think of. What can you do to offer the homeowner some relief?

It might be time to use mosquito traps to help fight this plague.

Why use mosquito traps?

Quite simply – mosquito traps will take out a lot of the mosquitoes from the yard. That will leave less work that your barrier mosquito control needs to do.

Also, they work even if the mosquitoes are pyrethroid resistant. (Stop The Bites! also works if the mosquitoes are Py resistant.)

The downside is that many traps also kill a lot of other non -target insects such as beetles & moths.

Mosquito traps add another layer in our IPM strategy to fight nascence mosquitoes.

What Is Integrated Pest Management (IPM)?

Integrated pest management, or IPM, is a process you can use to solve pest problems while minimizing risks to people and the environment. IPM can be used to manage all kinds of pests, specifically for mosquito treatment, anywhere–in urban, agricultural, and wild land or natural areas. For full definition of IPM (see more from here) (UC IPM / What Is Integrated Pest Management (IPM)?)

So, what is the prevailing, most effective, long-term way to manage pests? By using a combination of methods that work better together than separately. Approaches for managing pests are often grouped in the following categories: Biological control, Cultural controls, Mechanical and physical controls, Chemical control. 

Do Mosquito Light Traps Actually Work?

Yes, mosquito light traps catch mosquitoes.

Why?

Like a moth to a flame or lamp, insects are drawn to bright lights because they confuse the animals’ navigational systems.

It’s a familiar sight, especially in the summertime: moths and other insects gathered around lights like lamps. Often, creatures entranced in such a glow get eaten by predators or overheat.

Similar to other insects, mosquitoes are equipped with chemical, visual, and heat sensors to determine where their prey are. When you turn on an outdoor light at night, mosquitoes can become confused during their hunt for prey. They may try to navigate closer to the light. This attraction to light sources is called phototaxis. 

Studies On Traps Targeting Culex, Anopheles, & Aedes

In the effort to control mosquitoes naturally, mosquito light traps offer an added line of defense in an integrated pest management approach. In a recent evaluation by (Emmanuel P. MwangaHalfan S. NgowoSalum A. MapuaArnold S. MmbandoEmmanuel W. KaindoaKhamis Kifungo & Fredros O. Okumu) reported in the “Evaluation of an Ultraviolet LED trap for catching Anopheles and Culex mosquitoes in south-eastern Tanzania,” the conclusion is that The UV LED trap was efficacious for sampling Anopheles and Culex mosquitoes. For more information, please visit this

Additionally, another comparative study, Evaluation of six mosquito traps for collection of Aedes albopictus and associated mosquito species in a suburban setting in north central Florida  (D F Hoel ,D L KlineS A Allan). The results of these trials indicate that propane-powered commercial traps would serve as useful substitutes in lieu of CDC traps in Ae. albopictus surveillance efforts. They also remove a heck of a lot of mosquitoes from the environment. Thousands and thousands of mosquitoes, results summarized here:

mosquitoes captured by traps
Source: JAMCA-Vol25; No1; pg50 - table1; (DFHoel; DLKline; SA_Allan)

As you can see from the table above, the research found that commercially available light traps do catch mosquitoes.

In fact, traps can catch hundreds of mosquitoes in a single night. Unfortunately, these traps also catch a lot of other non-target insects such as moths and beetles. An additional concern is the amount of power required to run some of these traps. Many require a dedicated power source.

Faye-Prince trap
The Faye-Prince trap is used to collect mosquitoes that like to bite during the day such as the Asian Tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus. These traps are suspended from low branches and trees and use contrasting black and white surfaces to attract mosquitoes. A cooler with dry ice may also be used with this trap. The trap runs on a six-volt battery. - Photo Credit: Fairfax County, VA

Better Products for Mosquito Treatment

Additionally, the publication, ‘COMPARISON OF THE CDC LIGHT TRAP AND THE DYNATRAP® DT2000 FOR COLLECTION OF MOSQUITOES IN SEMI-FIELD AND FIELD SETTINGS page 69 – 72 – JFMCA VOL. 67 2020 by Nicholas Acevedo, Caroline Efstathion, Rui-De Xue and Whitney Qualls.

For decades, the CDC (New Jersey) light trap has been the standard used by mosquito control programs to conduct mosquito and arbovirus surveillance. This study found that commercially available mosquito light traps might be an alternative to the CDC light trap for mosquito surveillance. 

These commercially available light traps do more than work for researchers, they can also work for pest control operations. These traps do a good job of taking a lot of mosquitoes out of commission. 

Conclusion

You should consider including mosquito traps as part of your backyard mosquito service offering. They can be especially helpful in areas of extremely high pressure during peak season. They add another layer of Natural mosquito control to your IPM approach.

You will need to try different types of traps in different areas and at different times of year to impact your target species. All of the available traps have variable levels of efficacy across the range of species.

Like a lot of things in pest control, after some trial and error you will figure it out.

Do you currently use traps as part of your service offering? Why or why not? Please leave a comment below.

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