As you look at ways to protect your family from mosquito-borne illnesses, you should ask yourself these questions: Do I like butterflies? Do I like to hear birds singing? Is it important to keep my family healthy? If these things are important to you, you will be relieved to know that there are several healthy ways to keep mosquitoes out of your garden.
While most mosquito repellent products in the market today are toxic to humans and the environment, there are products that are totally safe, and have never been found to cause health issues to humans or animals:
Avoid products that contain Pyrethrum, Pyrethrins, Pyrethroids, or PBO (Piperonyl Butoxide) because these ingredients have not been proven safe to animals or humans.
"The pesticides known as pyrethrins, for example, are made from the extract of chrysantemum plants: plant based, yes, but also highly toxic to fish, tadpoles and beneficial insects." Peter Bosak, superintendent of the Cape May County Department of Mosquito Control in New Jersey and an adjunct professor of Rutger's University's Center for Vector Biology.
Products with these toxic ingredients do kill mosquitoes. The problem is that they kill all insects! Insects are the key food source to wildlife. For example, birds need to feed insects (protein) to their growing babies; butterflies and bees, whose populations are in severe decline and who pollinate one-third of our food supply are insects, and they too are killed with these harmful chemicals. When we use toxic chemicals to kill mosquitoes we are also killing all the beneficial pollinators that humans need to survive, and eliminating the key food supply that birds need to survive. Pyrethroids also kill fish if it accidentally gets into their water.
And in some humans, these chemicals cause numbness, itching, burning, tingling, dizziness, headache, nausea, muscle twitches, tremors, convulsions, and loss of consciousness. Why would you want to have your child play in a garden that has been sprayed with chemicals?
Learn more about the toxic effect of mosquito control chemicals:
Enjoy your garden, safely!