Summer is coming to and end. What does that mean? It means no more vacations to the beach, the kids are starting a new and exciting school year. The hot and humid weather is coming to and end. Some people look forward to the end of summer because they’re eager to say goodbye to mosquitoes. Unfortunately, mosquitoes don’t disappear with the hot summer temps. What do they do?
They thrive in cooler weather. Mosquitoes can be just as active as in the summer. Since they are cold-blooded, they do hibernate or die off, but only once temperatures are consistently below 50°F. So, in the early fall months, they feel right at home in the cool, but not cold, weather. The cooler temperatures that most of us look forward to, also mean mosquitoes are more active during the day, instead of in the evening.
The mosquito spends the fall preparing for winter. Certain species lay winter-hardy eggs that can survive the cold and then hatch when Spring comes with warmer temperatures and rain. The females of other species mate, fatten up, and go into hibernation in protected places, such as in a log or under a house. When the weather warms up in the spring, the female emerges and lays eggs. Very cold temperatures signal the end of the biting. Some mosquitoes may be able to survive the winter, but they certainly won’t be out biting you once the temperatures drops. The first frost is typically the time when you can say goodbye to those buzzing pests.
- Although commonly referred to as insects, ticks are technically arachnids.
- Ticks are classified as parasites since they all feed on the blood of host animals.
- Tick species number in the hundreds, but only a handful typically transmits disease to humans.
- The ticks of greatest concern in the US are the blackegged tick (also known as the deer tick in the eastern US), the Lone Star tick, and the dog tick.
- Ticks do not jump or fly. Typically, they transfer to hosts by waiting on tall grass and crawling aboard when a mammal happens by.
- Ticks can be active when the ground temperature is above 45 degrees Farenheit.
- Ticks that endanger humans also choose deer hosts and are usually prevalent wherever deer are found.
- Tick bites often go undetected because they do not hurt or itch.
- Ticks that enter your home can live there for extended periods.
- There are two families of ticks: hard ticks (Ixodidae) and soft ticks (Argasidae).
- Hard ticks have three distinct life stages: larva, nymph and adult.
- Soft ticks may go through a number of nymph stages before reaching adult status.
- Tick larvae are not believed to carry pathogens. The pathogens are received from the host when the larvae take their first blood meal. They will not feed again until nymph stage.
- The nymph stage is believed to be most responsible for infecting humans as nymphs are small and can more easily go undetected on the skin.
- An adult tick can wait for months to more than a year to find a suitable host before grabbing hold and feeding.
- Adult ticks will feed for several days to more than a week.
- Disease transmission does not occur for an estimated 10-12 hours after feeding begins.
- They have tremendous reproduction potential and can lay several thousand eggs.
- To remove feeding ticks dab them with alcohol, first. If this does not work, take tweezers, grasp the tick at the skin level and pull steadily until it is removed. If any mouth parts are left in the skin, they will not be able to transmit the disease, the the wound should be treated with an antiseptic to prevent secondary infection.
- Cats do not appear to be at risk for Lyme.
The quick answer is Yes. Like all living creatures they have to have some kind of nourishment to survive. Mosquitoes feed on blood and nectar. Which one, depends of the sex of the mosquito. The mosquito feeds on plant matter for sustenance, however, the female mosquito will feed on blood when she is going to lay eggs. And up to 300,000 of those eggs she will lay in small amounts of water. To keep this out of your yard, make sure you keep the water holding objects dry or treated.