Spring is in full gear in Garden City. The flowers are blooming, leaves are emerging, rabbits are hopping and the birdbath is busy again. Over at Creekside, major renovations to the pool are underway preparing for another swim season. Two recent outdoors updates:
The entire state of Pennsylvania is at high risk of fires currently. You can find the forecast fire map from the state DCNR here. Don’t light fires outdoors as long as the risk is high. The condition in DelCo is either high or very high depending on when you read this. According to the DCNR,
Dangerous conditions. Wildfires ignite easily. Fires spread rapidly and are difficult to control under windy conditions. Outdoor burning is strongly discouraged.
Very High (VH)
Volatile conditions. Wildfires start easily and spread rapidly with increased intensity. Fires are very difficult to control. Outdoor burning should not occur.
So no fires, fireworks, or anything that might lead to a fire. Over in New Jersey there’s a large fire due to similar conditions there. So be careful.
Consumer Reports recently wrote about how to deal with mosquitos without spraying. Their advice is similar to what I wrote previously. From Consumer Reports,
The best traps are ones that target mosquitoes specifically, not bugs or flying insects in general, according to Buckner, Healy, and Markowski. Some create environments that mosquitoes might fly into to try to lay their eggs. Depending on the trap, mosquitoes are trapped before they can lay eggs, or they lay eggs in a solution that can kill the eggs or larvae before they become adults. Others lure the bugs that are seeking out a blood meal (like you) with an attractant like carbon dioxide, which simulates breathing. Once in those traps, the mosquitoes can’t escape—and they die.
The Biogents traps I purchased are the type of GAT traps that consumer reports mentions. But at the end the report writes that the key is stopping mosquitos from spreading in the first place by reducing standing water and other breeding areas,
It’s far easier to manage mosquito larvae than adult mosquitoes, Healy says, because they tend to be confined to a source of standing water. Because of that, one of the first steps you should take is to identify standing water sources on your property.
If possible, take a weekly walk-around to dump out any sources of standing water. Look for buckets, trash cans without lids, tires, plastic pipes, or anything else where even a small amount of water can collect. You can also replace the water in something like a bird bath every week. Because it generally takes at least a week for eggs to be laid and larvae to hatch and then grow to the adult stage, you don’t need to do this more than weekly.
Recently Transition Town Media also had a write-up on the importance of insects. It is important to not use indiscriminate means of killing mosquitos like bug zappers or insect sprays because these efforts kill many of the necessary insects like spiders and bees.