View Full Version : Mosquito control
Aug. 1, 2010, 11:21 AM
I'd love to know what others have done about mosquito control around their farms. We are situated on a lake and my arena is grass, right down by the lake and I can't use it much at all, even for a turnout because the mosquitoes for a good chuck of the summer. We've see the electric foggers that cover approximately an acre, but not sure that would solve our problems unless we had two because the barn and the arena are a couple of acres apart (bad planning I know...as soon as I have 15k to spare I'll be relocating the arena next to the barn - it won't be grass...it'll be awhile though ;)). Someone once told me about some granules that are used on golf courses but I haven't been able to find anything through a google search.
If anyone has been successful at battling this problem or if you've got any ideas, I'd appreciate some help.
Oh, as a side - the big black dive-bombing horse flies seem to breed in my arena and I've been attacked by 4 and 5 at a time...is there ANYTHING that keeps them away? Add to that deer flies and green-heads*sigh*. Any help for those?
Aug. 1, 2010, 12:19 PM
Bats and barn swallows! Martins for the horse flies!
Goggle building a bat house and where to hang it. Put up welcome signs for the swallows :D . Martins are harder to attract.
Aug. 1, 2010, 12:34 PM
LOL...we have so many bats and swallows already! The other night I was in a stall and the horses in the barn started fussing and I heard that familiar "e-e-e-" of bats and they were tossling above the horses, spooking them. We also have swallows nests in the barn - messy and not my favorite but I do appreciate their hard works. It may be why the mosquitoes aren't as bad near the barn as down by the arena. I have to admit I love looking up at the nests when the little swallows are all crowded in their nest and they sit there staring down at me :).
Maybe some marlin houses near the arena like the Amish have near their gardens. It would look pretty anyway ;)
Aug. 1, 2010, 12:55 PM
So far, the Tractor Supply Horse and Pony fly spray sort of repels the horseflies. As for the mosquitoes, is your lake stocked? We restock ours every spring...fish truck comes to Southern States and Tractor Supply. Call the DNR or Fish & Wildlife to get some recommendations for your area. I have the granules, bought them from an organic supply house. I think they're called Mosquito Bits. It's BT in a granule. You're not supposed to use them anywhere animals can eat them, though. I just dump a little into any standing water.
Aug. 1, 2010, 02:17 PM
My house and barn are less than 200 feet from my (1/2 acre-ish)pond. No 'skeeters at all. I attribute this to my healthy fish, bird, bat and frog/toad population, and I'm sure the ducks help a little. I don't use any pesticides/herbicides (I don't use them much anyway) near the water to keep the aquatic critters healthy.
Aug. 1, 2010, 04:13 PM
Yes there are granules and floating things (called mosquito dunkers or something like that). We use them in the ditches and low areas, they keep the mosquitos from hatching in standing water. How big is the lake though? I am talking about smaller bodies of water!
Aug. 1, 2010, 07:09 PM
I'm thinking it won't work for a 20 acre lake (up to 65' deep).
Anyone with experience with those propane foggers?
Aug. 1, 2010, 08:43 PM
They're pricey but they work;
The Mosquito Magnet
The Mosquito Deleto
Home Depot now has a newer brand of the same that they carry too, forget the name.
I was very skeptical of them working...I'm one of those folks that could be dropped off at the South Pole in winter and still get bit by a mosquito.
A few friends/relatives have either one of the two listed above and at either property I do not get bitten by mosquitos.
They run between $400-$500 I think, give or take a few bucks. They cover an acre or so of area. Only upkeep is emptying them and making sure the lure is kept filled.
BTW, that's a huge lake! Deep too.
But stocking may help. Inexpensive fish stocking is with the baby fish...fry. The fry stay in the shallower water where it's warmer and they can hide from bigger fish and that's also where bugs breed. And that's what most fry eats. So you probably wouldn't have to worry about stocking the entire pond loaded with fish, just an order of the fry annually to stay in the shallows and eat mosquitos. :yes:
Getting a fountain or something to circulate water also helps a lot, moving water doesn't breed bugs. But...not sure that would work with such a large area to cover.
Aug. 1, 2010, 10:00 PM
Thanks for the recommendation on the Magnet and Deleto (love that name). We have been wondering if they are worth the money...I'm like you - the mosquitoes hunt me down while nobody else is bothered. If it would make life more livable on the deck and in the arena, it would absolutely worth it.
Our lake is stocked so we've got that covered. Funny that I've never even considered the fish as a mosquito control!
Aug. 1, 2010, 10:02 PM
I love that name too. First time I walked by one in a store I burst out laughing! :lol:
They do work well even if you're walking bug bait. :yes:
Aug. 2, 2010, 01:23 AM
I was going to suggest stocking as well but I see you've got that covered. Are they breeding? If not, you won't get much benefit from the fish; as mentioned above, the fry are the ones who take care of skeeter larvae. Is there a smaller species of fish you could introduce? Might be worth calling the DEC to check. For a lake of that size, I'd think that would be the most economical option.
Edit: After a hilarious series of google search terms, I did find this-
Biological mosquito control, states it can be used around horses and other animals safely, comes in a 2.5 gallon size for $215, which if I did my math correctly should be more than adequate. Depth doesn't really come into play as the larvae stay in the shallows. Also, free shipping!
Aug. 2, 2010, 08:40 AM
Wow, thanks Ruby :) I'll look into that more. We have some small marshy areas in the woods along the lake that could probably be the major culprit and this stuff could be the solution. I really like the attractant idea too - we may have to figure in several solutions into the budget for next season.
Our lake has blue gill, bass and some channel cat. My husband has an obsession with the carp that sneak through the channel from a neighboring lake when we get a bad storm that overflows the aqueduct. He heads down there with a gun and one of our dogs on 'Mission Carp Control' and it sounds like a shoot out down there. We use the carp for fertilizer.
I kayak regularly and see millions of fry....I will have to thank them for their larvae control next time :).
Aug. 2, 2010, 09:01 AM
Here is a link that UF has with regards to all things Mosquito.
http://mosquito.ifas.ufl.edu/Homeowners_%20Information.htm They reference the Mosquito traps (Mosquito Magnet) and what they've found. It's a pretty good website.
Aug. 2, 2010, 09:44 AM
Ooooh, thank you pg...if anyone knows about skeeters, it's the south!
Hey all, thanks for the tips and ideas. I'm going to be "offline" for a few weeks so I may not be responding after this post. Thanks for your ideas!