Answering Oklahoma City's Most Common Mosquito Questions

close up of a mosquito
Here in Oklahoma City (and just about everywhere else), there’s a lot of misinformation going around about mosquitoes. Some people think they depend on blood for food like vampires (they don’t). Some people think they’re not dangerous (they are). And some people think there’s just nothing you can do about them (there is). Below, we’ll bust some of the myths floating around the internet and answer your most burning mosquito questions. 

Why Do Mosquitoes Bite You?

Contrary to popular belief, mosquitoes don’t feed primarily on blood. Males never bite, and females only bite when they’re ready to breed. For the majority of their lives, both female and male mosquitoes feed on nectar for its high sugar content. Female mosquitoes only need the protein from a blood meal to help them prepare to lay their eggs – this is the only time a mosquito will bite.

Is It Bad If A Mosquito Bites You?

In a word: yes. While most of the time mosquito bites don’t lead to anything more than an annoying, itchy bump that goes away after a day or two, sometimes a mosquito bite can lead to dangerous infections. Malaria is the most famous and most deadly disease spread by mosquitoes, claiming the lives of up to a million people a year – many of them small children. While we don’t have malaria here in the States, mosquitoes do spread many diseases throughout North America, including:

  • West Nile virus
  • Chikungunya virus
  • Zika virus
  • Several variations of encephalitis

Many people may get an infection from one of these illnesses and experience few to no symptoms, but some people can become seriously ill. The mosquito-borne encephalitis variants in the US can and do kill. 

How Many Times Will One Mosquito Bite You And Can They Bite Through Clothing?

Mosquitoes can bite as many times as they want. A female mosquito feeds until she is full, meaning she’s gotten enough protein to facilitate her reproductive processes. As far as biting through clothing is concerned, mosquitoes can bite through certain types of fabric. If a fabric is thin, tight-fitting, or loosely woven, mosquitoes can stick their little needle mouthparts right through it. You need thicker clothes to block the bite. For instance, thin cotton t-shirts likely won’t stand up to a hoard of hungry mosquitoes, but a thicker jacket or a pair of blue jeans will.

What Smells Do Mosquitoes Hate And How Do I Keep Them Away?

There are lots of ways to keep mosquitoes away. While candles and plant oils have historically proven to be ineffective against mosquitoes, planting the actual plants they hate can repel them. Smells mosquitoes hate include:

  • Lavender
  • Rosemary
  • Citronella
  • Basil
  • Catnip
  • Lemongrass

An even more effective way to keep mosquitoes at bay is to make your property a hostile breeding ground. Mosquitoes need moisture to breed. Most species need stagnant water, but some can get away with as little as moist soil. So getting rid of still water sources like kiddie pools, birdbaths, outdoor pet water bowls, and the like can discourage mosquito activity. If you don’t want to eliminate these water sources, change them at least every other day to kill any larvae that may be in them. Trimming back trees and shrubs that give shade can also help encourage evaporation and dry out the soil. 

If your best efforts still don’t repel these perilous pests, there is a better way. Here at Guaranteed Pest Service of Oklahoma, our comprehensive mosquito control services include treatment to get rid of existing infestations as well as tailoring a customized ongoing preventative treatment plan to ensure you never have to deal with this issue again. So give us a call at (405) 873-6692 or visit our contact page to schedule your inspection. 

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