Ponds are a beautiful and idyllic addition to a backyard or garden, but during mosquito season, they can become your worst nightmare. These seemingly innocent water features provide food and a safe environment for mosquito larvae, making them an ideal habitat for mosquitoes to lay eggs and multiply. Therefore, one of the big questions we get from our clients is, how do you get rid of mosquito larvae in a pond?
Luckily, there are several easy ways to get rid of mosquito larvae naturally. Here are seven suggestions, ranging from installing a fountain to using natural mosquito larvae killer.
7 Ways to Rid Your Pond of Mosquitoes
Keep the water moving
Mosquito eggs can’t survive in water with a current, so stagnant ponds are ideal mosquito breeding grounds. If you want to prevent breeding, simply add an electric aeration pump or a fountain to create motion in the water. As an added benefit, increased aeration in your pond will make it healthier overall for the other wildlife you actually want, like fish or ornamental vegetation.
Curb the algae
When mosquito larvae hatch, they need a food source to boost their growth. Ponds are often ripe with thick layers of algae, which is great for a developing mosquito. By eliminating this food supply, you can keep mosquitoes away and also make your pond look cleaner and more aesthetically pleasing. Try using a pond algaecide to get rid of the organic matter.
Add a few critters
Consider recruiting some pond friends to help with your mosquito problem. Killifishes, topminnows, tadpoles, and other aquatic animals love eating larvae, and their presence can put a dent in larvae and pupae populations. Don’t fall victim to the myth of the mosquitofish, as this species isn’t actually as helpful in eliminating mosquitoes as their name implies. Check local resources to find a species of fish that is native to your area and will eat mosquito larvae and pupae without threatening other native species.
Treat your water with a wildlife-friendly insecticide
Since you likely want other wildlife to call your pond home, you should avoid use of chemical insecticides near the pond. A bacterial insecticide is a great alternative as these products kill mosquito larvae but don’t harm birds, fish, or other animals. You can buy Mosquito Dunks at a garden center or hardware store. Anything that contains Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (BTI) will do the trick. The dunks are effective for up to 30 days.
Trim surrounding vegetation
Adult mosquitoes thrive in areas with moist plant life, like the lush vegetation that often surrounds ponds. If you keep these areas trimmed and tidy, mosquitoes will be less likely to hang around and lay eggs in your pond. Be sure to regularly cut back overgrown vegetation and remove weeds and dead plants.
Fish aren’t the only natural predators of mosquitoes. Bats, dragonflies, and other animals will also eat the biting pests. If you create habitat for these creatures in your backyard, they’re more likely to hang around your pond and help control mosquito populations. Adding native species to your yard should help make it more inviting. You should also make an effort to support conservation efforts in your community to protect habitats beyond your backyard.
Tackle mosquito populations around your property
Your pond may be a prime breeding ground for mosquitoes, but chances are, they have also found homes in other surrounding areas of your property. Eliminate standing water when possible, and Mosquito Squad of Greater Washington DC for either a natural or standard barrier spray to effectively keep mosquitoes away.