The adult mosquito is capable of flying long distances in search of food. The female will look to feed on warm blooded animals and once engorged with blood, she will search for a place to lay her eggs. These eggs will need to be located in a place suitable for sustaining the thousands of young larvae to hatch and grow. Guess which container housing many gallons of rain water they would love to nest in… Your Rain Barrel!
Outdoor garden barrels are perfect habitats for the pesky little creatures known as the mosquito, outdoor pest. The annoying insect that feeds on your blood at dusk leaving a nice welt that can itch for days. Not only can it be an annoying insect, it can also carry a dangerous disease called the West Nile Virus. The West Nile virus is a nasty disease that can lead to fever, headaches, fatigue, body aches and an occasional skin rash on the main areas of the body.
Preventing mosquitoes from entering your rain catcher is easy if you have purchased a self contained one from a local retailer. However, if you have made your own from a trash can or steel drum, you may be inviting disaster. This could be not only attracting annoying pests, but could welcome a dangerous disease into your backyard , if you have not taken the appropriate measures in your design.
If you have just cut a large hole for the downspout or left the lid off for the water to enter, you have provided a perfect habitat for outdoor mosquito to lay their millions of eggs. These eggs could hatch and continue infesting the area with millions of mosquitoes. If you have indeed created your own rain barrel for harvesting rainwater, it is important to take the necessary measures in ensuring you have sealed the areas appropriately, to prevent any pests from entering and laying their eggs.
An enclosed unit is preferred, and will be best suited to keep the pests from entering the container. There are downspout diverter kits you can purchase that will allow water to enter the barrel and keep everything self contained and sealed. If you have designed an open ended rain barrel system, it would be prudent to cover the opening with a screen mesh or attach a lid with the opening covered with the screening material. This will allow the water to enter but prevent the female mosquito from being able to infest the water supply and lay her eggs.
In conclusion, your rain barrel is a great way to store water for your garden and plants, but keeping the outdoor mosquito from camping out and breeding inside will prevent longer term issues down the road. An ounce of prevention is definitely better than having to deal with the alternative.
Outdoor garden barrels can provide water to your bucket garden during times when rain is scarce. Rain harvesting should be part of your gardening strategy.
Keep your family and Gardens Safe.
Follow me on Twitter – easyhomecook