According to pest management professionals who took part in the 2021 PCT State of the Mosquito Control Market survey, companies typically controlled mosquitoes using targeted applications of mosquito adulticides (71 percent), larval control (62 percent) and fogging (56 percent).
In follow-up interviews, most said their employees use mist blowers to apply a synthetic product and often an insect growth regulator to yards about every three to four weeks during mosquito season.
“The key to successful mosquito programs is, per label, providing that complete coverage around the home where the mosquito’s going to rest or a mosquito’s going to look to breed,” said Trey Strickland of Waynes, which rotates products with different modes of action to ensure treatments remain effective. Waynes employees target shady, moist areas in the yard, such as heavy foliage and underneath decks and porches.
H & H Pest Control adds a “sticker” to its product mix to help materials adhere to vegetation. “We seem to get better control with that,” said Allen Langley.
Other PMPs use green products, such as botanical oils. Because these products have shorter residuals than conventional pesticides, they need to be applied more frequently.
“We’re primarily using 25(b) products simply because of the rules and regulations here in New York state,” said Gil Bloom, Standard Pest Management. He has found 25(b) products, considered minimum risk by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, to be effective, but he also makes sure clients understand their limitations.
Matthew Jennings of SafeYard Mosquito Services has some customers in metro Atlanta who want organic mosquito control. “Certain situations demand that I cannot use chemical,” he pointed out. This includes properties with koi ponds and those near natural bodies of water.
Thoroughly documenting property conditions helps companies provide consistent control, even if a different technician steps in to do the work. “You’ve got to learn the yard and find out the problem areas so you can notate it on the account. In the long run, that helps, because you’ll have less retreats, which nobody wants,” said Jennings.
In 2020, the average callback rate for mosquito control was 6 percent.
In addition to recurring mosquito control programs, 87 percent of companies offered special event mosquito control services, such as for outdoor weddings and community events. This accounted for only 8.3 percent of mosquito work on average.