National Pollinator Awareness Week overlaps with National Mosquito Control Awareness Week, which began on Sunday, June 21, Father’s Day. The American Mosquito Control Association is the sponsor of National Mosquito Control Awareness Week, and they promote the 3 D’s:
… Drain: Empty out water containers at least once per week
… Dress: Wear long sleeves, long pants, and light-colored, loose-fitting clothing
… Defend: Properly apply an effective repellent
Some containers — like the tank bromeliad (Neoregelia sp. ) — cannot be dumped but can be ‘hosed out’ to deter mosquito breeding. Two different species of mosquitoes (Wyeomyia mitchellii and W. vanduzeei) are intimately associated with tank bromeliads, and you can see pictures of these 2 species at the Florida Medical Entomology Laboratory identification page. Dr. George O’Meara characterizes the as wimpy biters, but I am not sure that I can agree.
Colorful water-holding tank bromeliads make attractive landscape plants, as seen in the comely palm-laden and turgrass-free Sarasota yard of visited as part of a Central Florida Palm Society (CFPS) quarterly meeting on 6/20/2015 by CFPS newsletter editor Dr. John Kennedy (shown below), Pelican Island Audubon Society Office Manager Bob Montanaro, and me.
Bob is shown below with 2 tall silver-blue palms: The massive bismarck palm (Bismarckia nobilis) and the slender, native Florida silver palm (Cocotrhinax argentata). The (usually) lower-growing silver-blue saw palmetto (Serenoa repens), which grows naturally only on the southeast coast of Florida, shares this attractive coloration.
Copious colorful bromeliads artfully accented an extensive palm collection ..
… even festooning the outside of the privacy fence …
Research conducted by Dr. Howard Frank indicates that each bromeliad produces about 100 mosquitoes per year. Dr. Frank worked at the Florida Medical Entomology Laboratory from 1972 to 1985 and retired from the University of Florida Entomology and Nematology Department in 2012.
You can do the mosquito math for this yard!
I have a poor understanding of the merits of keeping mosquitoes for the food chain or eliminating mosquitos to protect people from their bites ….? Felicity Rask Gloucester, VA
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