31 Comment

  • it’s interesting how different people are affected by them. i also get just destroyed every year. but i know people like an ex of mine who barely ever get bitten. we’d go on the same vacation to the mountains or whatever and i’d come back with my legs literally COVERED in bites (despite spray) and he’d have none. i am consistently covered in them all summer.

    • And people have different reactions. I know people who think mosquito bites are no big deal. “Yeah, it itches for a few hours, but then it’s gone.” Erm, no. It makes a 1.5″ welt that itches like fire for 4+ days. Then it goes down to a smaller dark purple welt that begins to fade after 10 days. I am highly motivated to avoid mosquito bites!

      • phl2dc

        Mine vary wildly… Some disappear within an hour, others stay for 5-7 days, complete with the swelling, mad itching, purpleness…

    • justinbc

      Yep, I don’t even bother to put spray on. I almost never get bitten, so it’s not worth the smell and residue. Partner however gets covered in bites within minutes of stepping outside.

      • “Yep, I don’t even bother to put spray on. I almost never get bitten” — Disbelief and extreme envy.
        I got my first bites on Tuesday night. I was gardening and wearing long pants and a long-sleeved shirt, but the b*stards got me just above the tops of my socks.

  • Yup, my first bite up in Petworth happened last night, so much for enjoying the great outdoors!

    Last year I took to blasting my yard big time with malathion. Worked really well, but made the surrounds smell like Bakersfield California industrial ag zone. Will likely switch to permethrin this year. Or build some sort of outdoor enclosure/curtains. They are just awful along our block, especially the dreaded Tigers even active during the day swarming my car before I get out!

  • In southwest Petworth, mosquitos we out of control. Sitting on the porch for 5 minutes last night, I had 10+ flying around me. We’ve tried dunks and yard spray as well as eliminating existing sources of standing water. The only obvious area is my neighbors porch gutter which never drains so it collects stagnant water. I treat it with dunks every two weeks. Does DC government do anything to treat problem areas? I know they have a 311 app mosquito abatement option.

    What are the best services in DC?

  • My ultra-dramatic post above notwithstanding, mosquito spray services worry me. I’d want to know what they’re spraying, and its effect on other insects. Honeybees, obviously, but others too. Bugs are an important part of the ecosystem, and I wouldn’t mess with it lightly.

  • Anonomnom

    I have a basement-level unit with a drain that is new and clean, no stagnent water… But I find that people go into the dark corners of the entry area during the day to rest and jump out to bite, so there is no relenting even at times outside of dawn/dusk. Anyone tried a trap or mechanism that they would like to recommend? Its a pretty small space, and fairly enclosed. Willing to try anything, I get 4-5 bites every morning and evening when unlocking my bike.

  • Btw, if anyone is looking for an alternative to DEET to keep those bastard bugs off you, I found a recipe using lemon eucalyptus oil/distilled water/witch hazel which actually worked for me. Like all the bad things in life that gravitate toward me, mosquitoes are no different. I decided to whip up a batch last year to see if it actually works, and had pretty good results. You kinda up smelling like lemon-scent Pledge but it was effective (and DEET-less).

    • I’m interested. Is there an actual recipe that used an had success with, or did you just kind of wing it?

      • A “sorta” followed a recipe. It was on one of those questionable websites with lots of ads (something like this: http://inhabitat.com/how-to-homemade-insect-repellent-sprays-and-lotions/ ), but essentially I used their suggested ratio of 50/50 water/witch hazel + about 20 to 30 drops of lemon eucalyptus oil for a 4 oz spray bottle. I have no idea what the optimal ratios are but that worked for me. I still have my bottle from last year and started using this year — still works. You will smell lemony though – the lemon eucalyptus oil is the active ingredient that somehow flummoxes mosquitoes blood sensors.

  • it seems like a lot of folks in pertworth rave about Mosquito Squad. My concern would be the chemicals in the yard? Is it safe for kids to play around that stuff. Also, I have heard that it also kills bees. As much as I hate mosquitos and seems to be someone who attracts them, I still don’t want to kill bees.

  • I’ve used Ward pest control for 2 years now. Pretty happy with their service. Since I have dogs, a toddler and love honeybees I’ve been using their “all natural” enviro friendly spray. They have to come more frequently but it’s worth it in my opinion. They come every 2-3 weeks and spray. The yard smells like a weird combo of essential oils for a day.

  • I use Mosquito Barrier. It’s garlic juice. I’ve used it for a few years with good success. It is the product that Mosquito Squad uses if you opt for the “natural” option.

  • For inside I highly recommend the Stinger indoor insect trap from Amazon. Place it outside your bedroom door and turn it on at night when you turn off the lights. It has a black light and a small fan. The mosquitoes are attracted by the carbon dioxide you exhale. If they see the black light on the way to the bedroom they’ll take a detour and be unable to checkout. Getting bitten at night is the worst. This machine does the job by catching any flying insects in the house.

  • I live in an English basement and there are a ton of mosquitoes in the alcove/entrance just below the stairs because the sunlight doesn’t reach there. As a result, it is dark and humid. Every time I open my door, many mosquitoes get into my apartment. There is one time that I counted 8 inside. Any recommendations?

  • We used mosquito squad last year and it was life changing. My children were able to enjoy being outside and I was not eaten alive. None of our neighbors participated, but somehow we were still protected in our front and backyard, even though we live in a row house. The threat of my immunocompromised son contracting West Nile Virus is what initially caused us to call Mosquito Squad, but it also really nice to get our yard back from the Mosquitos.

  • Give a thought to the clothing with insect-shield. It really works. I have shirts and pants and a couple of hats. At the start I was worried that they would feel stiff or somehow strange, but no, they’re fine. Supposedly good for 50 washes but I haven’t reached that number. As for mosquitoes v. Bees…well, to mix my metaphor…Shoot the closest snake first!

  • Roughly how much do these services cost? Is it a cost per x weeks, or cost per spraying? Does the non-chemical option cost more than the chemical one?

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