Most effective mosquito repellents.
In this article, we will look into different options on what are the most effective mosquito repellents for outside and inside your home.
A little bit about mosquitoes.
Do you know there are more than 3,000 mosquito species around the world? Only the female mosquito will feed on blood which helps them develop their eggs. The bites produce swelling bumps on the skin that will become red and itchy.
Female mosquitoes are known to lay the eggs in water which is necessary for their development. It is important to eliminate wet areas as much possible to stop them from breeding in your area.
Not only are the mosquitoes annoying but they can also carry serious diseases.
In Australia, some of these include Murray Valley encephalitis virus, Ross River virus, Barmah Forest virus and dengue virus. Periods of heavy rainfall or floods will lead to ideal breeding conditions for mosquitoes, even in non-tropical areas. Diseases that are spread by insects are known as vector-borne diseases.
Some of these diseases can make people ill and in severe cases can cause death.
To learn more about mosquito control and symptoms, please read our other blog.
What are the most effective mosquito repellents?
In the old days, we would have to be using heavy chemicals to get rid of the mozzies around the house. Today we are lucky to have a number of different solutions that can give you great results inside and outside. This enables us to regain back our property so we can enjoy outdoor living and have a good night sleep without annoying mosquitoes buzzing around.
If you don’t want to use any chemicals around your home, then a mosquito trap is a safer alternative to mosquito control.
There are a number of different traps on the market that collects mosquitos and breaks down their breeding cycle.
How do they work?
They work by mimicking an animal or person. This includes creating minute amounts of CO2 that we breathe out. Mosquitoes can smell this from a great distance and will come towards the mosquito trap. The most effective mosquito traps also include LED lights that are at a wavelength that mosquitoes find irresistible. Once they get close enough to the trap they are sucked into a dry storage chamber. There are no electronic or zapping sounds and the fans are super quiet, so you can have a good night sleep.
You can also add an octenol attractant to supercharge your mosquito catching experience.
What is octenol attractant?
Octenol is an attractant that makes the plume of CO2 seem even more like human breath, Chemically, it’s 1-octen-3-ol and is formed when linoleic acid is broken down by the body. It’s also produced by some fungi, including edible mushrooms. Mosquitoes and other insects can sense it, so it attracts them, as well as black flies and no-see-ums. It is completely safe and is even approved to be added to food and its also used in perfume.
Where to place it?
The placement of the mosquito trap makes all the difference in how effective it is.
Mosquitoes are usually located in bushes, high grass for shady areas and come out of these place in the evening. They also emerge as larvae living in water, so they may be coming from wetlands, drainage ditches or puddles in irrigation fields.
Once they start the journey towards the food, they will fly upwind. When you know the usual wind direction, look for a place that is upwind from where the mosquitoes enter and at least thirty feet from people. That way, when they come out, they will be drawn towards the trap instead of people.
A shady area is the best to trap the mosquitos since they prefer to avoid the sunny and hot area.
The bugs tend to feed around dawn and dusk and will continue to feed up to two to three hours after dark. Make sure your trap is running 24 hours a day to keep luring mosquitoes into the trap.
The traps are completely safe, chemical free and odour free.
Just like outside, try placing mosquito trap in dark areas and away from people and make sure to have it running 24 hours a day.
Experiment with different locations to get the best results. If you don’t want to run the units all day; it is advised to turn the units on 2-3 hours before you go to sleep, make sure the room is dark when the unit is in operation.
What is it?
Pyrethrum is a naturally occurring chemical that has a neurotoxic effect on mosquitoes and other insects. And pyrethrins are the active ingredients in pyrethrums. The primary effect of pyrethrins is insecticidal and there is evidence that they have a repellent effect against insects.
Pyrethrins are derived from the Chrysanthemum daisy flower, which is harvested in Tasmania. This substance organically comes from the flower to act as its defence against insects and is very deadly to them. The compound essentially paralyzes the insect. It is completely safe for people and pets. Completely biodegradable and ozone safe.
Pyrethrins are often used in pesticides and repellents but don’t confuse it with pyrethroids, which are synthetic insecticides. (Chemical copy of nature)
If you need immediate results to keep mosquitoes, flies and other insects away from your home it could be achieved with automatic mosquito sprays with natural pyrethrins.
How does it work?
Pyrethrums induces a toxic effect in insects when it penetrates the cuticle and reaches the nervous system. If insects continue to be in the area where there is a presence of pyrethrins, it will die.
Automatic Insect spray is the most effective mosquito repellent and the easiest solution to keep your home free from insects. It works immediately in getting rid of mosquitoes. Make sure you get your product from a trusted source as there are many companies selling products with cheaper formulations and as a result, the effects are greatly reduced.
What about DEET?
DEET is commonly used in a lot of mosquito repellents, however, there has been some conflicting reports on the safety of using DEET. A study conducted in the late 1980s on Everglades National Park employees to determine the effects of DEET found that a full one-quarter of the subjects studied experienced negative side effects. Symptoms included rashes, skin irritation, numb or burning lips, nausea, headaches, dizziness and difficulty concentrating. Another study that was done at Duke University, found that frequent and prolonged DEET exposure led to diffuse brain cell death and behavioural changes.
But, other studies have shown that while a few people have a sensitivity to DEET, most are unaffected on a sporadic basis according to the instruction on the label and it is very effective against mosquitoes.
However, we are now seeing a lot more new products on the market without DEET and they are reportedly better than ever.
One of the most effective natural insect repellents is Citriodiol.
It has been extensively tested in the laboratories in London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and under field conditions in many insect – infested areas including Tanzania, jungle areas of Malaysia, Thailand, Bolivia and many more locations. The study confirms that in particular formulation Citriodiol gives total protection from biting mosquitoes for over 10 hours.