Home is where the heart is.
Home is also where the pool is. And the gazebo is. And the backyard bar is. And the swing set for the kids is.
Over the past year, many people chose to upgrade their living space due to the lockdown imposed by the coronavirus pandemic. Now, as mandates are being lifted, some residents still want to take advantage of their humble abodes, spending more quality time with family and friends safely in their own spaces.
In order to keep outdoor spaces comfortable, pest control may be necessary.
“Mosquitoes breed and lay eggs all spring and summer when the weather gets warm. Mosquito eggs are very hardy and they can overwinter if they haven’t yet hatched at the end of a season. All that is necessary to facilitate a hatch is warmth and water – as little as a capful. So, when we start to see wet, warm weather in the spring, the eggs hatch and the mosquitoes come out,” said Karen McCulloch, owner of Mosquito Squad of Central NJ.
“So, if possible, it’s ideal to start before the hatch. We usually start treating in early April. However, it’s never too late to improve the situation. With a continuous spray plan we can reduce the mosquito population in your yard by up to 90%,” she said.
Serving southern Union, Middlesex and Monmouth counties, McCulloch said residential mosquito and tick control is key.
“Our traditional and most popular treatment plan is a spray program that is applied to the perimeter of the yard and anywhere else where mosquitoes and ticks may reside. The treatment eliminates mosquitoes and ticks on contact and continues to work for up to 21 days. When reapplied on a regular schedule the treatment is 85-90% effective in eliminating mosquitoes and ticks,” she said.
“We also provide an all-natural option for treatment. The natural product is made up of essential oils. It is applied the same way, eliminates mosquitoes and ticks on contact but then acts as a repellent (rather than an eliminator like our Barrier Protection treatment) for up to 21 days after it is applied. The treatment is 75-80% effective in repelling mosquitoes and ticks.
“Our technicians are trained to notice where mosquitoes and ticks are likely to reside and feed. They will apply the treatment to trees, bushes and landscaping, creating a barrier around the yard. Once the mosquito lands and feeds on the greenery where the treatment was applied, they are eliminated. I live in a highly wooded area and find that with consistent treatment, we are not chased inside by the mosquitoes,” she said.
Mosquito Squad was considered an essential business during the pandemic.
“With more people staying home and utilizing their backyard and outdoor spaces, we had a very busy season,” McCulloch said.
However, there may not be much defense this season against the dreaded cicadas.
“We had a wet spring and with temperatures rising we expect the mosquitoes and ticks to be out as usual. As for the cicadas, pesticides are generally ineffective at keeping them away. Cicadas are harmless and are actually providing some environmental benefits. They help to prune trees, aerate the soil and, once deceased, their carcass provides an important source of nitrogen for growing trees,” McCulloch said.