Mosquitoes. They are one of the most annoying and potentially dangerous pests not only in the United States, but also in the world. These small, flying insects feast on human and animal blood, leaving behind swollen, red bumps that itch and sometimes even hurt.
Throughout the years, experts have compiled products, recipes, and sprays for people to use to help quell their mosquito problems once and for all. Unfortunately, nothing works 100% of the time when it comes to getting rid of mosquitoes, but many people do find that using a combination of methods can lead to the best results.
So, what can you use along with sprays, repellents, home remedies and bug nets to help get rid of mosquitoes?
Invite the predators, of course!
While mosquitoes are incredibly annoying, they do play their role in a healthy ecosystem, with one of those roles being that they are an abundant food source to a number of vital animals.
But what eats mosquitoes and how can you invite these good predators to your property? That’s what we’re here to find out. Join us as we discuss more about what eats mosquitoes and go over tips and tricks you can use to help lure these good predators in and get rid of those bad mosquitoes one and for all.
Let’s get started.
What Are Mosquitoes?
Mosquito bugs are small, flying insects who are known to feed on blood and spread disease.
Most of us have a good idea about what a mosquito is, but unless you’ve done a bit of research, you may not know that mosquitoes, despite their annoying feasting preferences and habit of making us itch, are actually an important insect.
In the United States, there are roughly 175 species of mosquito buzzing around. Mosquitoes of the US are small, flying insects and have been divided into three genera:
The Culex mosquito genera are considered the most common. These mosquitoes are the ones most often found in and around homes and are responsible for spreading a number of diseases including but not limited to West Nile, encephalitis, and more. While they can be found throughout the US, these mosquitoes are most often found in the Southeast United States.
Most feared due to their potential for spreading malaria, the Anopheles genus of mosquito is found throughout the United States and across most of the world. Luckily for us Americans, the Anopheles genus of mosquito that resides in the US is not known to cause malaria, though their international cousins do.
The Aedes genus of mosquito is perhaps the newest to the United States. These small, black and white striped mosquitoes were first discovered in tropical environments outside of the United States but have since migrated to the US and are now commonly found nearly everywhere in the world save for Antarctica. One of the most concerning things about the Aedes mosquito genera is that they are known to transmit dengue fever. Yikes!
But regardless of the mosquito genus you’re dealing with in or around your home, you’re sure to find these pests annoying. And while scientists have begrudgingly agreed that mosquitoes do play an important role in a healthy ecosystem, many also agree that their cons far outweigh their pros.
Mosquitoes are responsible for countless human illnesses and deaths each year not only in the US but throughout the world. Furthermore, mosquitoes are in no danger of becoming extinct any time soon. The mosquito population is exponentially greater than the population of humans and other mammals, which is no surprise when you consider that a single female mosquito is able to lay between 100 to 200 eggs in a three day period.
While mosquitoes only live around 15 days, this is still plenty of time for a female mosquito to lay up to 1,000 eggs in her lifetime.
Someone pass me the DEET!
But their reproductive rate isn’t the worst part about female mosquitoes. In fact, did you know that only female mosquitoes bite? That’s right. Female mosquitoes are responsible for those itchy, red bites left behind on your arms and legs during summer. Their male counterparts, on the other hand, prefer to feed exclusively on nectar, plant sap and honeydew.
Female mosquitoes are also fond of that plant-based diet, though their needle-like mouth parts are also designed to perfectly pierce flesh, leaving behind those incredibly itchy bumps.
The below video discusses why those darn mosquito bites itch so much!
Attracted to the carbon dioxide humans and animals exhale, female mosquitoes can sense a human’s presence from up to 30 feet away. They can also detect sweat and other odors humans emit that alerts them that an iron rich blood meal is near. But why do only females drink blood?
Blood is rich in iron and protein, which the female mosquito requires in order to produce her eggs. Remember, these buzzing, biting bugs can lay up to 1,000 eggs in their short lifetime, so they’ll need all the nutrients they can get to reproduce rapidly.
But your blood isn’t the only thing mosquitoes are after. And if you have a yard rich in mosquito activity, you might be wondering why.
So, before we get into what eats mosquitoes, let’s talk a bit about why mosquitoes have infested your property in the first place.
What Eats Mosquitoes – Why Are Mosquitoes So Attracted To Your Yard?
Mosquitoes are attracted to stagnant water sources like ponds, bird baths and more.
Before we talk about what eats mosquitoes, let’s talk about why mosquitoes are attracted to you and your yard in the first place.
Whether male or female, mosquitoes are generally attracted to sources of moisture and stagnant water. This could include anything from:
- Overturned Buckets
- Bird Baths
- Pet Water Bowls
- Overturned Trash Can Lids
- Old Tires
- Kiddy Pools
- Over-Watered Gardens or Lawns
- And Clogged Gutters
Mosquitoes are also attracted to certain people more than others and even particular colors. In fact, studies have shown wearing darker clothing, sweating more profusely than others, pregnancy, higher alcohol intake, and even a higher body temperature can result in a better likelihood that mosquitoes will be attracted to you.
But before you toss your dark clothes, throw out your beer and wine, and keep yourself or your spouse hidden away for nine months during pregnancy, keep reading.
Along with using mosquito repellents, wearing sprays, and making home remedy products to get rid of mosquitoes in your yard, you can also invite the predators. But how does knowing what eats mosquitoes help you get rid of these pests?
Let’s find out.
What Eats Mosquitoes – How Can Mosquito Predators Help You Enjoy The Outdoors Again?
Inviting certain mosquito predators can help get rid of mosquitoes naturally so you can enjoy your property in peace.
Before people look for what eats mosquitoes, they tend to seek out products like sprays and insect repellents. While many of these products are effective, they can also contain harsh chemicals and poisons that are toxic to people, pets and the environment.
Furthermore, most of these solutions are temporary. However, when you discover what eats mosquitoes and invite these predators to your property, you are creating a natural, safe, and highly effective solution to help keep these insects at bay without the use of harsh chemicals, expensive insect repellents, and of course your time.
With that in mind, it’s now time to talk about what eats mosquitoes and learn how to get these mosquito-eating critters to stick around your property.
What Eats Mosquitoes – The Predators You Should Know About
Mosquitoes can be dangerous, but there are a number of natural predators that can help you control them.
When looking at what eats mosquitoes, you should first ask yourself if the solution is worse than the problem. For example, bats eat mosquitoes. While bats are highly regarded as beneficial animals and even protected in a number of regions throughout the United States, they are also greatly feared and misunderstood.
For some, inviting a colony of bats onto their property could seem like a more frightening concept than dealing with mosquitoes in spite of the fact that, statistically, mosquitoes are actually more dangerous than bats.
Of course, learning what eats mosquitoes and deciding which mosquito predator you prefer to have hanging around your property is totally a personal choice. And the good news is you do have options.
So, what eats mosquitoes? The list includes:
- Crane Flies
The list may be short, but each of the above animals and insects can help you get rid of your mosquito problem this summer. Let’s learn more.
Bats are one of the most highly regarded predators when it comes to mosquitoes.
As we mentioned briefly above, many people have a fear of bats. That said, doing a little research can quickly change this opinion, especially when you realize that bats are highly beneficial, docile, and even protected animals.
Common in the United States and in many regions throughout the world, bats are considered by some to be endangered. The little brown bat and the big brown bat, two common bat species in the US, are some of the best predators of mosquitoes and some of the first species to pop up when one searches for what eats mosquitoes.
These two bat species can be found throughout the United States and are most active during dusk and dawn. While they have been known to be problematic, especially if they invade homes, a bit of research will show that these bats are generally harmless when they stay in the right habitat and can even help keep properties clear of mosquitoes and other annoying pests.
However, it’s important to invite bats to your home properly. While they are considered highly beneficial mosquito predators, it is estimated that 1% of bats do carry rabies. Furthermore, when bats invade and roost in homes, a compilation of guano and urine can lead to decay of attics and the interior of walls and chimneys, leading to human illness and structural damage.
Luckily, there are ways you can safely invite bats to your home without risking damage or illness to your family.
Looking to invite what eats mosquitoes to your yard? Bat boxes are a wonderful tool you can use to invite bats safely. Best of all, these bat houses can either be purchased or you can make them yourself. These hanging, wooden bat houses are excellent for helping to invite bats to your yard because they can help protect roosting bats and keep these bats where you want them – which is away from your home while still on your property.
Big Bat Box
If you are looking for an excellent bat box you can use to invite bats from our list of what eats mosquitoes to your property, we recommend the bat box above by Big Bat Box. This bat box is made with cedar wood and can accommodate a number of bats to help eliminate the mosquito population around your home.
Simply follow the instructions to install the box on your property and then leave it alone. Many bats roost temporarily but will return to a good roosting site, which can make this bat box an excellent mosquito deterrent time and again.
The Eastern Bluebird is one of the most common bird predators of mosquitoes.
Another critter on our list of what eats mosquitoes are birds. Perhaps less intimidating than bats, birds are beloved for their morning songs, interesting behaviors, and often beautiful appearances.
However, when it comes to what eats mosquitoes, birds are another predator on the list that may also be considered destructive. In fact, many home owners search for ways to get rid of birds as they often nest in home sidings, eaves, roofs and trees. An accumulation of bird droppings can deteriorate car and house paint, while some species of birds can damage tree life.
That said, there are ways you can lure birds in and help keep them from becoming problematic while also taking advantage of their mosquito-eating diet.
Of course, remember that not all birds are going to feast on mosquitoes. The species of birds that most commonly dine on these blood sucking pests include:
- Purple Martins\Downy Woodpeckers
- Red-Eyed Vireos
- Chirping Sparrows
- Yellow Warblers
- Eastern Bluebirds
- Baltimore Orioles
- Eastern Phoebes
- And Terns
You should also keep in mind that, when looking for what eats mosquitoes, birds can be lured in by a number of products. You can invite birds to your property and keep them from causing problems by ensuring you carefully place attractants in specific areas around your home.
Bird feeders, bird baths, and bird houses specifically designed to attract the above listed birds can all help you invite these mosquitoes predators to your property while keeping them from getting too close for comfort.
Roam Wild Squirrel Proof Bird Feeder
Inviting what eats mosquitos onto your property can be problematic if those predators attract other problematic pests. Bird feeders may attract beneficial, mosquito-eating birds but they can also attract messy, destructive squirrels.
In order to keep the birds but deter the squirrels, we recommend using a bird feeder that is squirrel proof, like the Roamwild Squirrel Proof bird feeder listed above. This bird feeder is designed to attract many of the wild birds that feast on mosquitoes while keeping squirrels at bay.
Dragonflies have a 95% success rate when it comes to hunting their prey.
When it comes to what eats mosquitoes, we highly recommend checking out dragonflies.
Considered one of the most talented insect predators in the United States, dragonflies feast on a variety of insects. With a 95% success rate, dragonflies kill most of what they target in one swoop, making them highly beneficial to anyone dealing with a large number of mosquitoes on their property.
With a lifespan of up to six months, adult dragonflies are attracted to water sources, just like mosquitoes, and the main reason is because the bulk of their diet typically swarms stagnant water sources as well.
To invite dragonflies to your property, many experts recommend focusing on perfecting stagnant water sources to suit dragonflies’ needs. Of course, this can be a double-bladed sword when it comes to getting rid of mosquitoes vs invigning what eats mosquitoes.
That said, if you enjoy having your stagnant water sources (ponds, bird baths, fountains, etc) then these below tips will be helpful.
To use dragonflies as your source of what eats mosquitoes, we suggest adding water plants to your yard. Surround the edge of ponds and fountains with plants and flat rocks, and removing fish and frogs from surrounding water can also help keep dragonflies around. Fish and frogs are dragonfly predators, so you can’t have both, unfortunately.
Again, this is going to be one of those scenarios where you weigh the pros and cons of inviting what eats mosquitoes to your yard verses dealing with mosquitoes in order to enjoy your garden as it is.
Of course, dragonflies aren’t the only critters on our list of what eats mosquitoes. Keep reading.
Though they look similar to dragonflies, damselflies are a different species.
Often mistaken for dragonflies, damselflies are another predator you should look into when considering what eats mosquitoes.
Though closely related to dragonflies, damselflies have thinner bodies and are perhaps less aggressive than their hunter-like dragonfly counterparts. In fact, when it comes to what eats mosquitoes, you may opt to choose a dragonfly over a damselfly just based on the dragonfly’s success rate.
That said, damselflies are beneficial and helpful too. They lay in wait for their prey to come to them, making it easier to harbor damselflies along with aquatic life like frogs and fish in your yard.
Damselflies can also be beneficial for gardens as they eat a number of insects like aphids, gnats and, of course, mosquitoes. Adult damselflies have also been known to eat spiders while their nymphs, who develop in the water, feast on smaller fish, tadpoles, and aquatic insects.
You can invite damselflies to your garden using the same tactics as you would to invite dragonflies. However, unlike with dragonflies, you do not necessarily need to get rid of frogs or fish that reside in your backyard pond, as they can be a significant part of a damselfly diet during nymphood.
Frogs and Tadpoles
The green tree frog is one of three species of frog known to feed on mosquitoes.
When looking into what eats mosquitoes, frogs and tadpoles are not necessarily high on the list. That said, there are three species of frog that is particularly prone to feasting on mosquitoes and mosquito larvae. These species include the spadefoot toad, the giant tree frog, and the green tree frog.
This is excellent news if you have a backyard pond and want to know how to deter mosquitoes while also harboring other wildlife.
Other species of frogs and tadpoles can be beneficial when it comes to looking into what eats mosquitoes, though they should not be your end-all solution. While they can help reduce the mosquito population by competing for mosquito larvae food during their tadpole stage, keep in mind that even the three most common species on our list of what eats mosquitoes will likely not eat enough mosquitoes to be that noticeable.
The Gambusia Affinis, or mosquitofish, is one of the best mosquito predators you can introduce to your backyard pond.
If you have a garden pond then you’ll love learning about a few different species of fish on our list of what eats mosquitoes. In particular, there are a few beneficial fish you should know about. These fish include:
- And Gambusia Affinis
Which is your best bet for what eats mosquitoes when it comes to these fish? Experts agree that the Gambusia Affinis, also known as the mosquitofish, is the best and most highly effective mosquito predator to add to your pond.
In fact, the mosquito fish is so widely recognized as a hero when it comes to what eats mosquitoes that many professional pest experts and other agencies employ this fish for mosquito control.
The red eared slider turtle is commonly kept as a pet in North America and is compatible with many backyard ponds.
Another creature you can add to your backyard pond is the red-eared slider turtle. This animal is not only a beautiful and entertaining addition to any garden pond, but it is also a ravenously hungry mosquito predator.
Red-eared slider turtles make excellent additions to ponds and can help keep pests like mosquitoes and other pests at bay. However, while these turtles are high up on our list of what eats mosquitoes, remember that they can be sensitive to certain environments and need certain elements in their habitat to survive and thrive.
Before investing in a red-eared slider turtle for your mosquito control needs, we recommend doing plenty of research to ensure you are providing them with the proper environment in your garden.
There are a variety of spider species that feed on mosquitoes.
Last but not least on our list of what eats mosquitoes, we have spiders. While spiders are not everyone’s cup of tea, these arachnids are highly skilled in insect control and are regarded by many pest control experts as the superman of mosquito control.
Some of the most beneficial garden spiders to help get rid of mosquitoes include:
- The Jumping Spider
- The Crab Spider
- The Yellow and Black Argiope Spider (AKA the Banana Spider)
- The Barn Spider
- Daddy Long-Legs
However, most other spiders, like those on the above list of what eats mosquitoes, are highly beneficial, harmless to people and pets, and can be introduced safely into your backyard garden.
When Using What Eats Mosquitoes Doesn’t Work – Other Products To Get Rid Of Mosquitoes
Along with inviting predators to help control mosquitoes, we also recommend using quality products.
Along with taking advantage of what eats mosquitoes and inviting these predators onto your property, we also recommend looking into products to help get rid of mosquitoes as well.
However, keep in mind that some mosquito repellents, sprays and traps can also harm what eats mosquitoes, so inviting these predators while using certain mosquitoes repellents can be counterproductive.
With that said, there are some products we recommend you use alongside inviting whichever predators you choose on our above list of what eats mosquitoes. Some of our favorite products are listed below. Take a look.
EcoRaider Mosquito Spray
If you are looking into what eats mosquitoes as a form of mosquito control, chances are you will be interested in other natural methods and products you can use to deter mosquitoes as well.
We recommend EcoRaider Mosquito Spray because it uses all natural, plant-based ingredients to kill and repel mosquitoes in all stages of life without harming people, pets or the environment.
This spray can be used directly on skin and outside to protect you from mosquitoes and is safe to use alongside other methods of control.
Wondercide Flea and Tick
The above spray by Wondercide may say for fleas and ticks, but it can also help effectively get rid of other pests like mosquitoes, spiders, bed bugs and flies. This product can be safely used alongside other methods as it will not harm wildlife like bats, birds, fish or frogs.
The product uses essential oils like lemongrass, peppermint oil, rosemary oil and cedar oil to repel mosquitoes and is safe to use around people, pets and the environment.
Livin’ Well Mosquito Zapper
Using products like sprays and repellents can certainly help get rid of mosquitoes, but we also like products like mosquito zappers because they are natural and don’t require the use of any sprays, chemicals or solutions.
The above product is specifically designed to repel mosquitoes, moths, and other flying insects around your home and can be used safely in conjunction with other methods of mosquito control including using predators from our list of what eats mosquitoes above.
Home Remedies To Help Control Mosquitoes
Mosquito bites are no fun. Luckily, there are some home remedies you can use to prevent them.
Along with finding out what eats mosquitoes and inviting these predators to your home, there are other home remedies you can use for mosquito control that should cost you little to no money and can be highly effective.
How To Use Essential Oils For Mosquito Control
Over the years, studies have found that certain essential oils can help repel pests like mosquitoes, spiders, midges, and other biting and flying insects. The best essential oils you can use for mosquito control include:
- Lavender oil
- Clove oilTea tree oil
- Citronella oil
- Tea tree oil
- Citrus Oil
- Neem Oil
- And Soybean Oil
You can make your own mosquito repellent using essential oils by mixing ten to fifteen drops of an oil or a combination of oils of your choice above in two cups of water. Pour the solution into a spray bottle and shake it well.
You can spray this spray both inside and outside to kill and repel mosquitoes. To kill on contact more efficiently, you can even add a few drops of liquid dish soap to the mix.
Avoid Being Outside During Dusk or Dawn
Mosquitoes are most active during the twilight hours, so to avoid getting bitten or having an unpleasant encounter with mosquitoes, experts recommend staying inside during these two times each day.
Keep Covered In Fabrics Like Cotton, Nylon, or Denim
Wearing longer clothing like pants and shorts can help protect you from mosquitoes, but there are some fabrics that mosquitoes can penetrate with their needle-like mouthparts. To keep your body bite-free, we suggest wearing tightly woven clothing made of materials like nylon, denim and cotton.
Stick To Wearing Lighter Colors
Remember, mosquitoes are attracted to darker colored clothing. This means clothing that is dark blue, purple, red, black and dark green can all be attractive to mosquitoes. If you’re in a region rich with mosquito activity, we suggest sticking to lighter colors when out and about.
Tips and Tricks To Prevent Mosquitoes
You can try planting lavender in your garden to help prevent future mosquitoes.
Along with knowing and utilizing what eats mosquitoes, you can further prevent and repel these pests by making your property less hospitable to them.
If you’re into gardening, try companion planting with the below mosquito-repellent plants:
- Lemon Scented Geraniums
- Bee Balm
- Lemon Thyme
- Floss Flower Lemon Mint
- Lemon Balm
We also suggest following a few other tips to keep mosquitoes at bay during mosquito season, including:
Removing Unnecessary Stagnant Water Sources
You can help prevent mosquitoes by not only inviting mosquito predators to your property but also by removing any stagnant water sources that may attract the pests. Some of these water sources could include overturned buckets, old tires, dirty bird baths, rain-filled gutters, and more.
If you have a pond, fountain, bird bath, pet water bowl, or kiddie pool you prefer to keep outdoors, we suggest keeping the water inside fresh and replacing it often.
Using A Permethrin Bug Spray Before Going Out
Permethrin is a highly effective compound used in many chemical bug sprays. It works well to kill and repel mosquitoes and other biting pests like fleas, midges, and more. However, permethrin can be toxic to people, pets and the environment, so use it only as directed and keep these kinds of sprays out of reach of children.
Keep Windows And Doors Shut During Dusk and Dawn
Mosquitoes are most active during spring and summer, which is the time of year many of us enjoy keeping our windows and doors open in the hopes of catching a nice breeze. Along with using mosquito predators to your advantage, we also suggest closing your doors and windows during dusk and dawn, as this is when mosquitoes are most active.
Doing this can prevent you from winding up with mosquitoes inside your home and can reduce your chances of getting bitten.
And remember, though mosquitoes are small, they can be dangerous and are known to transmit serious diseases. For this reason, it’s important to understand that using mosquito predators as a source of mosquito control may not be effective alone. That said, if you use mosquito predators along with other mosquito control methods and remedies, including products and home recipes, you should be able to enjoy your summer with limited mosquito contact.
So, what do you think about our list of what eats mosquitoes? Would you invite bats or spiders to your property, or would you prefer to invite birds and dragonflies? Tell us your thoughts about mosquito predators in the comment section below.