Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Mosquito Misery

Watch out: A fierce stealth mosquito that lunges when you walk by its shrub or blade of grass is on the upswing

Mosquito Misery

A fierce stealth mosquito that lunges when you walk by its hideout in a bush or behind a dandelion is on the upswing. 

Bob Kent, head of NJ's Office of Mosquito Control, says the Asian Tiger Mosquito, which arrived in this country inside tires imported from Asia in 1985, are "an emerging species" in this area.  Though most of the 63 species of mosquitos attack at night, these bloodsuckers are on the prowl all the time. 

"They are an ambush mosquito... they tend to rest in areas that are out of the way, in shrubbery, or in a basement, or another dark area,"  he says.  

When they detect someone in their territory, they attack. 

Kent says the mosquito population in the Philadelphia Metropolitan is up this summer, partly because the weather keeps changing from very wet to very dry and then back again.  The mosquitos love this. 

Who knew? 

What's a person to do if he doesn't want to share his blood? 

Use common sense, says Kent.  "Avoid places where mosquitos tend to harbor, places of great humidity and still areas." 

So, stay inside? 

Well, if you must venture outdoors, Kent says to use repellant and avoid colognes and perfumes because they attract insects.  Light-colored threads also help.   

And if you have a yard, make sure there's no standing water, even in a discarded bottlecap!  That's where NJ scientists found a bunch of the Asian Tiger eggs after they arrived in the state. 

Jan Hefler
About this blog

Written by Inquirer staff writer Jan Hefler, the Burlco Buzz blog covers breaking news in the the county, as well as its quirky characters, crime cases, politics, outdoor recreation and environment. Contact Jan at jhefler@phillynews.com.

Jan Hefler
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